FFG Review: Madras Cafe

Hey there!

It looks like things have finally settled down here to the extent that I can finally start doing what I wanted to do in the first place with this site, namely, WRITE FILMI REVIEWS.  The aim is at some point to give you a mix of film reviews both old and new, so that you guys can get an idea of my thoughts on movies you have seen or movies you would like to see.  Since this one might still be in theaters, I will refrain from giving away a lot of spoilers, and focus instead on the merits of the film based on my patent pending movie rating system!

Ease of Pardesi Comprehension: Language 3.5/5

First off, let me just say that it was incredibly gratifying to watch a movie where I clearly spoke more Hindi than the only potential heroine in sight.  The downside to this was that throughout the movie her conversation’s with John Abraham’s character were incredibly confusing, since her dialogue never seemed to quite match his, at least according to the subtitles.  So at first I chalked it up to my limited comprehension of Hindi and really bad subtitles.  Until I double-checked with a native speaker who confirmed that no, it wasn’t just bad subtitles, but rather honest subtitles translating what is really a lousy script.

Ease of Pardesi Comprehension: Subject 2/5

On the whole the movie was pretty clear to understand, and the plot, for all that it was definitely complicated, never got so wildly out of hand that I couldn’t follow it (not like one of those two girls fall in love with the same guy only to find out that one fell in love with the guy’s twin who died before the movie started and has to hide from his evil uncle who is also the guardian of the girls sort of thing.  Or Baadshah.)

However, I still gave it a two because the story revolves around historical events that may not necessarily resonate with a foreign audience of my age group, because it is removed from us both historically and geographically.  I had no idea how extreme the Civil War in Sri Lanka had been, and was taken aback by the grim realities of it that many of us in the West may not be  aware of.

Overall Quality of the Movie: 2.5/5

Overall I enjoyed the twists and turns involved, but found the incomprehensible dialogue mixed with a convoluted plot a little hard to follow.  Plus, I’m sorry, but the journalist could have just memorized some Hindi lines.  That was weird.

Number of Catchy Songs: none that I can remember

I don’t think the focus of this movie was on the soundtrack, let’s just put it that way.