7.9/10
29,261
107 user 61 critic

English Vinglish (2012)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Drama, Family | 5 October 2012 (India)
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A quiet, sweet tempered housewife endures small slights from her well-educated husband and daughter every day because of her inability to speak and understand English.

Director:

Gauri Shinde

Writer:

Gauri Shinde
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Top Rated Indian Movies #116 | 9 wins & 16 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sridevi ... Shashi Godbole
Adil Hussain ... Satish Godbole
Mehdi Nebbou ... Laurent
Priya Anand ... Radha
Sulabha Deshpande ... Grandma
Michael Patrick Hoban Michael Patrick Hoban ... Immigration Officer
Sujatha Kumar Sujatha Kumar ... Shashi's sister - Manu
Navika Kotia Navika Kotia ... Sapna Godbole
Shivansh Kotia Shivansh Kotia ... Saagar Godbole
Cory Hibbs Cory Hibbs ... David Fischer
Rajeev Ravindranathan ... P Ramamurthy
Maria Romano Maria Romano ... Yu Son
Sumeet Vyas ... Salman Khan
Ruth Aguilar Ruth Aguilar ... Eva
Ross Nathan Ross Nathan ... Kevin
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Storyline

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 Paroma

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Family

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

India

Language:

Hindi | English | French | Tamil | Telugu

Release Date:

5 October 2012 (India) See more »

Also Known As:

Aangilam Vaangilam See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$745,414, 7 October 2012, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$1,670,773, 21 October 2012
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Sridevi is making a comeback in this movie after 26 years in Tamil films, 18 years in Telugu films and 15 years in Hindi films. See more »

Goofs

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 »

Quotes

Shashi Godbole: This marriage is a beautiful thing. It is the most special friendship. Friendship of two people who are equal. Life is a long journey. Meera, sometimes you will feel you are less. Kevin, sometimes you will also feel you are less than Meera. Try to help each other to feel equal. It will be nice. Sometimes... Married couple don't even know how the other is feeling. So... how they will help the other? It means marriage is finished? No. That is the time you have to help yourself. Nobody can help ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

References Puncture (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Navrai Maajhi
Written by Amit Trivedi
Performed by Sunidhi Chauhan Swanand Kirkire Natalie Di Luccio 'Neelambari Kirkire'
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Of Soulful Sentiment & Sunny Smiles
5 October 2012 | by anagpalSee all my reviews

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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