When I drove by the movie marquee reading Mira Nair’s The Namesake (2007) last spring, in my head I accidentally said, “Na Me Sa Ke.” Since I read Mira Nair’s name first, I figured it must be a Hindi word. DUH! I was fully into my Bollywood hobby (obsession) so my mind eager for all things filmy, tried to morph the title into a more bolly-appropriate title. Even though I know Mira Nair’s movies aren’t Bollywood, my brain would not accept it! I did rather quickly figure out my amusing mistake and treasure it as one of my best ever! I finally saw the movie this week and was hypnotized by Tabu’s character’s strength and vulnerability. The scene where she receives the phone call about her husband and runs through her split level suburban home flipping on all the lights and finally emerges through the open garage onto the lawn was brilliant! I have a non-homsexual-homosexual crush (from George Costanza on Seinfield) or girl crush on Tabu, which has grown stronger from her work in this film. Irfan Khan’scharacter was equally fabulous.
THE NAMESAKE is the story of the Ganguli family whose move from Calcutta to New York evokes a lifelong balancing act to meld to a new world without forgetting the old. Though parents Ashoke and Ashima (Irfan Khan, Tabu) long for the family and culture that enveloped them in India, they take great pride in the opportunities their sacrifices have afforded their children. Paradoxically, their son Gogol (Kal Penn) is torn between finding his own unique identity without losing his heritage. Even Gogol’s name represents the family’s journey into the unknown. (FoxSearchlight)
On behalf of all Americans, I extend an apology to all Indians, NRIs, and Bengali immigrants in particular, for Maxine’s (Jacinda Barrett) behavior, especially her behavior at the funeral.
Time I spent crying during the film = 10%.
Time I spent sobbing during the film = 5%.