Saturday, April 16, 2005

Three and a Half Snouts Up for Bride and Prejudice

(:)(:)(:)(. for Bride and Prejudice the so-called Bollywood take on Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. I absolutely loved it and it may be one of my new favorite movies, so in my heart it will always be a 4-snouter. I loved the romance, the music, the color, the characters and most of all the pageantry--see this film on the big screen if you're going to see it at all. The riot of orange and red and pink saris in the dance and music scenes is nothing short of delicious.

But I reserve a half snout, and maybe should reserve a whole one, for wooden acting on the part of the Darcy character and for some moments where the deliberately unreal and unbelievable quality of the film instead of delighting distracts. Yet, even these moments are often quickly corrected with adorable self-consciousness.

For example, in the classic falling-in-love montage of delightful things our two main lovers do in a couple of special days together, we can't help but roll our eyes at why a previously closely watched chaperoned Indian girl would be allowed to go alone on an impromptu helicopter ride from L.A. to the Grand Canyon with her unsuitable European-American suitor. But just as we're thinking, "oh, come on..." it cuts to a scene on the beach in Santa Monica where about a hundred gospel choir members in matching blue robes surround them with a serenade. And then you go, instead of c'mon, "wow! " and a huge grin spreads over your face at the sheer self-conscious ludicrous act. You forgive it and give yourself to it again.

Caution: women will like this chickpea flick musical much more than men. And it is entirely suitable for children--teenage girls should be encouraged to see it.

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