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|Index||15 reviews in total|
This film was more slapstick than horror, but it also had charm. I don't believe this film was meant to be a serious comment on the British Asian way of life, just a wry look at the lengths this mother would go to in order to secure a husband for her daughter. The characters were engaging, making me want to know what was going to happen to them all, and I never yawned once, which is a good barometer of an entertaining film in my opinion. Some scenes had me wanting to jump up and join in, while another was an obvious homage to a 70's horror movie, but with an amusing twist. If you want cerebral,don't bother, but if you want to have a laugh, go for it.
I cannot believe that I have just come back from watching this film at the cinema, and the best thing about going was watching the film trailers before the actual film started. This is categorised as a "comedy horror"....it wasn't funny, and it would not scare my 5 year old nephew. The scary part was how bad the acting was and the storyline. The film concept did not work and it felt like a lot of the attempted jokes were too forced. The director attempted to make a film that would appeal to everyone but ended up as a huge disaster and did not have the fundamentals of being a good film. The director has made other hit films such as Bend It Like Beckham and Bride and Predajice and they were much more entertaining to watch. It was very surprised that such a highly rated directer managed to make such a mess of this film and I cannot think of one memorable part of the film that would encourage me to recommend it to others.
One of the funniest movies in a while! The director gets the whole
Indians abroad thing to absolute perfection. One felt like one had met
everyone on screen before! All the actors except Shabhana Azmi were
really good. OK...the actor who plays her daughter wasn't brilliant
either but at least she wasn't full of herself. The plot itself was
rather cute and the editing is very well done. Only issue with it is
that the target audience is rather limited. You need to either be an
Indian living abroad or know enough Indians living abroad to get most
of the jokes. The whole thing is not to be taken seriously for even a
moment of course!
This one gives Bend it like Beckham a serious run for its money.
Let me start with the end, which is the end credits Stayin Alive with
Punjabi Remixed and the bloopers in the movie that are running with it.
Its like two best worlds coming together!! Only Bally Sagoo could have
pulled this off!! I really like Gurinder Chaddha movies since Bend It
like Beckham, the whole Punjabi touch to the movie that she gets, the
wedding season and the all the food that comes with it which is like
what Punjabis die for (or work for). In this movie, you had all the
elements put in place, you have good music, wedding, punjabi style the
whole NRI culture based out of London. The other added elements that
make it a dark comedy, but surely not scary.
Overall with all the elements are placed the only thing is it NOT a typical romance film with some really funny moments.
Granted the expectations were high because of Shabana Azmi but then
again, what can one expect from Gurinder Chaddha. With the exception of
her segment in 'Paris, Je T'Aime', I haven't been impressed by any of
her work. That said, 'It's a Wonderful Afterlife' isn't that bad. I
prefer it over the boring 'Bride and Brejudice'.
The minus points are that Chaddha relies on too many Indian British clichés which have been done to death in many other films. I thought Azmi would have more screen time but was disappointed in that respect. The title is misleading. The story had so much potential but Chaddha messes it up. I didn't find the sequences with the ghosts to be amusing.
Now the plus is that most of the jokes work. I was laughing out loud especially at the sequences with Sally Hawkins. The 'Carrie' homage, though out of place, had me laughing out loud. I thought Shabana Azmi was great with what she was given. she's mostly let down by the poor script. Goldy Notay is quite likable. Sendhil Ramamurthy is limited to playing the typical love interest. Zoe Wanamaker is wasted. Sally Hawkins is a scene stealer.
Overall, I didn't mind 'It's a Wonderful Afterlife' for a one-time-watch. It made me laugh even though it could have easily been a much better movie.
Certainly not as bad as other reviews have made out. I knew nothing about the film in advance but had an expectation of a humorous horror. That's what I got. I didn't expect an Oscar winner, or something taxing with multiple subplots, or some subtext relating to Bolshevik Russia - and I wasn't disappointed in this. In terms of horror, comedy, crime thriller, love story, family relationships and everything else thrown into the film I found most aspects were topped by other films. None of these bits rose above the others and none stood out as particularly good. It was therefore a bit mellow and so a pretty simple watch. Some pop stars these days are raved about but I really wouldn't have them as anything other than background music at a dinner party. This warranted a bit more attention than a background film whilst I potter about the house, although I was occasionally tempted to grab a cup of tea and check my phone for emails/messages without pausing it. I am sure was not the wish of the director/producer. However, there was enough to hold me for the whole film. I thought the presentation and acting was as expected with the whole thing being slightly above average - hence the 6/10.
Unfairly slated Ealing-style slapstick comedy. Obviously fun to make,
with familiar faces and heart-warming family drama, along the lines of
"OMG what is Mum doing now?", as she tries to solve her daughter's
seemingly non-existent marriage prospects. Along the way, the audience
bops along to Indian remixes of popular western disco and pop, and
wonders how an unlikely murderer will meet their fate. The plot is
unsophisticated yet gripping. The dialog is natural, with gags, but the
film's undeniable humour comes from the same loving, awkward moments
that drive it's story. I can't see anyone walking out of this movie,
unless they don't wish to be entertained.
It's a Wonderful Afterlife (2010) is not a work-of-art, not a beautifully made film. But it does not try to be. It is a funny murder-love-story with falling down moments, with familiar actors having a blast making ridiculous comedy. If you want a horror show, or a logical plot, then it may let you down. But for laughs, and for a screenful of some of our most popular actors (with new faces too), it will tickle you. Nothing much to complain about here, if you love life.
Gurinder Chadha brings on her masala mix with the punningly titled Its
a wonderful afterlife.
People in Southall are getting murdered rather gruesomely. In a homage to se7en one of them is forced to eat curry until he chokes and his stomach explodes. However all of the newly dead seemed to be stuck in a halfway ghostly state with their murderer.
Their crimes? They called the murderer's daughter fat, too big to get married. Goldy Notay is the slightly on the heavy side jilted fiancée with a good heart but causing her mum (Shabana Azmi) to be stressed as she feels Goldy is being left on the shelf.
Sally Hawkins plays Goldy's best friend who has acquiesced new age Indian beliefs after trip to India. Sendhil Ramamurthy is an old pal of Goldy who is also the police officer investigating the murders and has a thing for Goldy.
After a crafty title you feel the film will be a riff on the more famous James Stewart film but its a soppy love story which takes bits from other movies. There is a Carrie bit, some of it reminded me of Stardust. Some of the characters were not believable, why was Mark Addy's Detective Inspector hell bent on framing Goldy up for the murders when DNA evidence ruled her out?
There are a lot of fat jokes, many of them predictable and unfunny and overall although the film is amiable enough with a nice use of Black's hit song 'Its's a wonderful life' used in a sequence, I felt the film was undercooked both as a romance and a masala comedy.
The premise may sound a little 'Serial Mom', with an over-protective mother ensuring that anyone who dares to slight her precious offspring doesn't live to regret it, but there the similarity ends. The victims return to haunt the mother in question and she must figure out a way to be rid of them as the body count rises. Despite homages to some well-known films, most notably a sweet Bridget Jones-esque moment where the unlucky-in-love heroine finds herself with two men vying for her attention, which ultimately descends into full-scale 'Carrie' territory, the film is a fairly original idea. Plus there is a perfect scene we all dream of: being passionately kissed by a hot bit of stuff in front of the ex. I only intended to watch a small part of this film to chill out before going to bed, but it kept me entertained until the end. Perhaps playing 'spot the EastEnders alumni' was a contributing factor. Unlikely to become a well-loved classic like its (almost) namesake, but good, ghostly fun.
I watched this one chilly winter's afternoon while nursing a heavy
cold, hoping for a mildly diverting way to pass an hour or so when even
the thought of getting up off the settee was an effort. Feeling better
now but still struggling to believe how this wreck of a movie ever got
a green light.
It was fascinating in a perverse way: Just how much lumpy dialogue, heavily telegraphed and unfunny jokes, inane and unconvincing plot twists, pointless steals and clichéd direction can be packed into one movie? How was a (mainly) decent cast ever persuaded to participate in this mess? Did nobody read the script? Do they not have agents? A waste of talent, of money, and of time - yours and everyone involved. Even if you're lying on a settee nursing a heavy cold.
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