Monday, January 7, 2008

The Namesake Review

For me this movie was a roaring success in one area: the cultural transformation of an immigrant Indian family. Two films this year (also Kite Runner) have really the cultural conflict that goes into the American melting pot. Little details here, suc...(read more)h as the Indian seasoning the family's matriarch adds to a Rice Krispies breakfast, really help create believable immigrant characters. My problems arise from some of the performances. While Khan and Tabu are both decent performers many of the other actors are undercut by underrealized depictions or, worse, their own limitations. Kal Penn is really not much of an actor. He tries very hard here to grow beyond Harold and Kumar but it's just so very difficult to take him seriously. The film's three main supporting characters, Penn's sister and two love interests, are fatally underealized. The girlfriend characters come off as catty or petty not because of a fault in character or as the result of a tangible action, but rather simply because the screenplays says they need to in order to further the plot. It's not a bad movie, per se, I just wouldn't really recommend it.

Overall Score: 5/10

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