British retirees travel to India to take up residence in what they believe is a newly restored hotel. Less luxurious than its advertisements, the Marigold Hotel nevertheless slowly begins to charm in unexpected ways.
Acting under the cover of a Hollywood producer scouting a location for a science fiction film, a CIA agent launches a dangerous operation to rescue six Americans in Tehran during the U.S. hostage crisis in Iran in 1980.
Iris invites her friend Jack to stay at her family's island getaway after the death of his brother. At their remote cabin, Jack's drunken encounter with Hannah, Iris' sister, kicks off a revealing stretch of days.
Famous actress Lara Tyler can't get married to author James Arber without intrusive paparazzi crashing the ceremony. Because of Jame's best-seller, Lara's agent, Steve, checks out the little known Hegg Island in Scotland as the site for their next attempted wedding. Unfortunately, James is a hack, and his book (supposedly based on Hegg) relays little of it accurately. Katie, an island native and the only unmarried woman on it, has been unlucky in love. She's working on writing her own guide to Hegg Island when Steve and crew arrive, eventually hiring her as a reluctant decoy bride to distract the paparazzi. In a mix-up, she and James end up married to each other while Lara, having spotted the press, goes into hiding. Katie and James now have to get an island divorce while avoiding the press while other parties seek out Lara (who has disguised herself as one of the elderly islanders). Written by
The script was priced at seven million pounds (the amount it would cost to make it), however the film only had a budget of two and a half million pounds. This led to many scenes and characters being cut during filming, in an attempt to cut costs. See more »
Just before Angus tackles James, Kate can be heard yelling out, "Angus!" but when the camera cuts to a long shot, Kate hasn't opened her mouth yet. See more »
I wanted to grow old with you. You're beautiful and clever now - it's easy to love you now - but I'll still love you when the wind's dried you out, and when you're old and broken.
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Great characters and location elevate this above the standard romantic comedy
It is difficult, by their very nature, for Romantic Comedies to be excellent films. Those looking for a film 'destined to be a classic' probably will not approve of this one. But if you are looking for entertainment, 'The Decoy Bride' has potential.
As far as the story goes, it is pretty standard; you have the famous couple, looking to avoid the paparazzi stalking them, and the 3rd party who gets between them more or less accidentally. What elevates this film is the 'sweetness' of most everybody involved. The audience is not lead to root for or against one of the characters, as is often the case is such films; the characters all have their good points and bad points, and no one stands out as being eminently detestable.
Not only are the major characters likable and well acted, but the location is very impressive. The fictional island of Hegg is every bit as likable and attractive as the characters in the story. The inhabitants speak with a melodic accent which still is understandable, and have an attitude which speaks well for their day to day life. And their ability to profit from other people's foibles.
It has some good lines. For instance, in one scene the mother says "I don't trust that monk" and the daughter quips "They have been known to monkey around". There is a sense of incompleteness to the whole script though; there are rumors it was edited considerably to fit within budget. Still, everything which needs to be there for the story, and our enjoyment, is there.
This might be a good film for the family. There are no swear words, no gratuitous sex or nudity, or implications of rampant immorality.
In short, like most such films the events are highly unlikely and even impractical (like completely rebuilding a castle, probably without permission, in short order and only for a wedding), but it is well enough done that we don't care.
By the way, don't rush out when the credits at the end start. There is another interesting scene to come.
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