It was a freakishly busy week up in these parts – one that found me in the audience for live theatre twice in one week! Add to that a family gathering and a gathering of movie nerds at a local saloon and you don’t leave yourself a lot of time to watch stuff.
The good news is, while the tally is pretty meagre this week, the entire foursome was made-up of first time watches.
#52FilmsByWomen continued this week with Mira Nair’s MONSOON WEDDING.
This is a film that is wildly overdue for me to watch. Many many moons ago, I had some friends set me up a Bollywood syllabus, with the hopes of expanding my horizons a little bit. The idea came on the heels of my anime syllabus…which actually worked gangbusters in terms of getting me into a genre I previously thought “wasn’t my bag”.
So, yeah, I’m bad at projects sometimes.
MONSOON WEDDING brings me back into the contemporary world after my week spent with John & Fanny back in the 19th Century. Its a pretty simple story at the end of the day; a family wedding takes place and we stay with all involved for several days leading up. There’s lots of tension, lots of joy, several secrets, and great amounts of love.
What’s not to like?
Mira Nair is a director I know-of more than I know. I’ve seen her segment in NEW YORK, I LOVE YOU (it’s charming), and have seen snippets of her work in AMELIA and THE NAMESAKE. So by and large, this was my introduction to her…and really, I couldn’t have asked for a better introduction.
Her film is so chocked-full of life and vibrancy, that it’s pretty much impossible not to fall in love with it. She gives it the gentlest touch when we need to be reminded what it’s like to fall in love, and likewise gives it an unexpected ferocity when sins are unveiled. Not all sins, mind you. Because of course, sometimes in life we fuck-up, and do something that hurts those we love…but also comes from a place of fear. Sins like these beg for clemency, and Mira Nair brings that to the scenes that need it.
With a family this big, there are a lot of stories to tell, and to see them all get their due before this film was over was pretty impressive. Many, I’d wager, will be especially charmed by the story thread of the wedding planner who falls hard for one of the women in the family. It’s sorta hard not to.
Mira Nair joins the ranks of Jane Campion and Deepa Mehta as women whose work this series has made me want to get better-acquainted with. This film came with so damned much vibrancy and life that it’s almost impossible not to want a second helping (…and a third…and fourth..)
Maybe I’ll even finally get to that Bollywood syllabus! I wager my professors would likely want to amend it with a few more titles. It’s been a few years since they first tasked this slacker with the reading.
Here’s the week at hand…
EVERYBODY WANTS SOME – More on this tomorrow
Streaming/Blu-Rays/DVD’s I’ve Never Seen
VIVRE SA VIE – My blindspot series will be hard-pressed to bring me a film I fall for as hard as this.
MONSOON WEDDING – I really wanna go to an Indian wedding now. They look like a blast.
WILD TALES – For what it’s worth, I liked the first tale and the last tale the best.
Boxscore for The Year
54 First-Timers, 43 Re-Watched
97 Movies in Total
How’s about you – seen anything good?