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The story of a quiet, sweet tempered housewife who endures small slights from her well educated husband and daughter everyday because of her inability to speak and understand English. She is resourceful and open-minded but somehow these traits don't get noticed by them. Then one day on a trip to visit her sister in Manhattan she decides to enroll in an English Learners class and meets a host of new people who teach her to value herself beyond the narrow perspective of her family. Written by
Tamil SuperStar Ajith kumar did a Cameo in Tamil version of this film. That is, doing the exact same part Amithabh Bacchan did in Hindi. See more »
In the movie, the wife is seen using the PATH train system and talks about going to 22nd St. Station. There is no such station in the PATH system or in the New York subway system. The closest would be the PATH 23rd St. Station. See more »
When you don't like yourself... you tend to dislike everything connected to you. New things seem to be more attractive. When you learn to love yourself... then the same old life... starts looking new... starts looking nice. Thank you... for teaching me... how to love myself! Thank you for making me... feel good about myself. Thank you so much!
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For someone who has been born and brought up on English medium schools, and I don't say this proudly, but for whom English is his first language of thought, it is very hard to put self in Sridevi's shoes. Someone, who doesn't know English, but in all other ways is very competent. Someone, who is constantly the butt of family jokes and jibes, especially by the husband and the rapidly growing daughter. That the film succeeds in making us feel her angst, and her ways of coping with it, showing the kind of situations she encounters, especially when she goes to New York, is a tribute to the story and the performances, especially the virtuoso acting masterclass by Sridevi, who shows, in more ways than one, that she's still got it !
The debilitating effect of not knowing the language is brought alive by her mispronounciation of 'Jazz', a visit to her daughter's PTA, her solo trip to New York, handling immigration, her ordeal there buying coffee and various snide ones by both her husband ('She is born to make laddoo's') and her daughter ('Why did you take my book if you cant read ?'). Redemption arrives when she decides to take English lessons, while in New York, visiting her sister to help with her niece's wedding. She finds unlikely allies in the sister's house and a gallant, romantic French fellow student. And suddenly, life is not so bleak anymore.
The film tries hard not to get too sentimental, balancing every tear with a chuckle or a smile. Amitabh Bachchan's delightful cameo, the other madcap students in the English class, none as zany as Salman Khan, the Pakistani, the cheerful nature of her son, her own special, sari-clad Michael Jackson impersonation, all serve to smoothen out the various trials and tribulations thrown her way.
Sridevi makes you root for her, getting her every expression, every frown, every smile spot on. Most of the other characters are stereotypes the busy, indifferent husband, the cute son, the gallant Gaul, the bombastic Pakistani etc. But she has shades to her character, moments of weakness followed by instances of strength. Waffling indecision followed by gutsy action.
Isn't life about communication, rather than the language ? About the message, rather than the medium ? When / How did we get so snobbish about how different people speak, their accents. As the film rightly asks, why have we become so judgemental merely based on the persons attire, language ? Surely there is more to life than that ? More at www.apurvbollywood.blogspot.com
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