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Monsoon Wedding traces the Verma family and follows various family members as they travel from across the world to be present at an arranged marriage in New Delhi. Problem is; there's a monsoon coming and until it breaks people are going just slightly 'Monsoon Crazy'. Much of that craziness is reflected in the film. Events continue to build until the rain breaks and then, suddenly, the pace eases off and there's a gentle, heart warming end after all the tension.

There are a some lovely contrasts between the old and the new, traditional and nontraditional, as the characters come under the spotlight and slowly there emerges five different stories of love which span continents, explore morality and cross through social divides. There's much here that's comic but there's also sadness and drama among the music. I particularly enjoyed the relationship between the wedding arranger and the servant girl which almost made me stand up and 'whoop' close to the end......though I'm not telling you why!.

Monsoon Wedding is a complex movie and packs a great many messages into approx. 109 minutes. There's romance, heartbreak, intrigue, music and comedy but; look between the lines. There you'll find a real tribute to the past and future of New Delhi and a real love of it's culture and it's people.

Monsoon Wedding is a journey away from traditional Bollywood.

I'm reviewing the UK DVD 'Film Four' version. Run time is approx. 100 mins. Special features; Theatrical Trailer, Director's Commentary, Cast and Crew Interviews. Director; Mira Nair.
3 people found this helpful
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on 21 June 2010
Wow! This film is wonderfully directed and flows seamlessly. A riot of colour - you can almost smell and taste the marigolds.

The story centres around the wedding of the main couple Adita and Hemant. Adita, though, has been having an affair with her ex boss Vikram, a married man who won't leave his wife. Another storyline involves the bride's sister Ria, who reveals during the celebrations that her Uncle (who is at the wedding) abused her as a child. Now he is eyeing up another child of the family. And then there is the wedding planner, a jokey chap named Parabatlal Kanhaiyalal Dubey ('P.K.' Dubey for short) who it would seem has never thought of marriage even though he has hosted hundreds of weddings himself. Plenty of laughs are provided by PK but when he falls in love with the young servant girl Alice it sets into motion one of the most touching storylines of the whole film.

I have just read that this was filmed on hand held camera. I have to say I am amazed - to me hand held makes for very nauseating viewing like riding on a camel. The cameramen must have had very steady hands! I think that the handheld gave it a very personal feel. I felt like I was a guest, invited in, and made one of the family!

I was totally absorbed in this film throughout and never looked at the clock once!
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on 17 February 2007
This is a most engrossing and enjoyable film, but one that is not without flaws. Monsoon Wedding, as the director explains in one of the DVD's "extra" tracks, is a celebration of the upper middle class urban Punjabi life style: energetic, ambitious, Westernized, noisy and earthy. Underlying the film is the tension between modernity and tradition in India today, a contrast that the director often makes explicit by switching from the sophistication of the wealthy family preparing for the wedding to the wonderful, ageless chaos of the Delhi streets. There are moments of ravishing cinematography - the scenes filmed in the rain are quite magnificently done, for example. The colours (the director throughout favours blocks of pastel shades) and the music are impressive, but not quite as spectacular as some reviewers have suggested, and some people may find the tale as a whole a frustratingly slight one. It is sometimes rather difficult to follow the English passages, and there are episodes of the plot (such as it is) that are a little unconvincing. The bride-to-be, for instance, switches overnight from a passionate affair with her lover, to an almost equally passionate attachment to her fiancé, with an ease that rather beggars belief. These aspects apart, this is a fast-moving, watchable and memorable film, and one that is very much worth seeing.
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on 5 April 2002
After having seen this film when it first came out, I felt like I'd been to a wonderful, fantastic, huge family party as I left the movie theatre. A party with wonderful food, lots of bubbly champagne, a deliciously sweet dessert and a rich, dark cup of coffee with a fine brandy to go with it. And then dancing and more bubbly, giggly champagne!!
It is a wonderfully made film about a wedding being planned, guests arriving from all over the world, family problems, lots and lots of family love, parallel love stories, etc. etc. The family father's disappointment with his young son, worrying that he will become a homosexual because he loves to watch cookery programmes on television and coreographing dances is hilarious! The way he handles a respected family member who has abused his beloved foster-daughter is deeply moving. It has everything you want in a great movie!! The music is fantastic as well - and perfectly matches the scenes of happiness, sadness, tragedy, dancing, falling in love, drama, and finally: the monsoon wedding. As the film proceeds, you feel that you get to know the family like they're your own. And the filming of busy, noisy Delhi makes you feel like you're right there. The love story of Alice, the maid, and the party organizer, which runs parallel to the family's trials and tribulations during the organizing of the wedding, is a lovely bonus!
I highly recommend it - having seen the film twice, I am now purchasing the video, and have already bought the soundtrack CD. I'm bitten, smitten - I have become a totally dedicated fan of Mira Nair.
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on 14 August 2015
I bought this solely on the 5 star reviews and wonder if I saw the same film !
It is tedious and I really had to force myself to watch it to the end , it really is a mishmash of vaguely related themes.
Only joy is that it was cheap.
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on 24 September 2017
Feel-good in spades. A beautiful panorama of a family 👪 trying to cope with all the pressures of a wedding. Heartwarming and thought-provoking at many levels
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on 10 March 2011
The stories of 5 characters with the backdrop of the final wedding preparations of an arranged marriage taking place in India. People are flying from across the world to be at the wedding and there is a lot of hustle and bustle with the typical wedding last minute preparations where nerves are fraught and people are meeting up who have not seen each other for a long while.

This is captured brilliantly and you feel as though you are a priviledged on-looker at this event. In that sense it is quite an intimate film, you see the public face of the character, their weaknesses and their sily little behaviours. This interweaving is skilly executed midst a riot of spectacular colour - I watched this a month ago and as I think about it is the colour of oranges, yellows and red.

The stories of the characters are revealed to the viewer gradually throughout the film. This is not a film where you are sitting on the edge of seat biting your nails wondering what is going to happen yet. It is more like a story that is being told where you are saying "and what about so and so - what happened then?"

This film invites you into another cultural world where the environment and practices are different but where people are people and you grow fond of them.

My husband and I watched it together and at the end smiled and said "That was good!"
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on 22 April 2016
This is really great film, which looks at the dynamics of an extended Indian family , that come together for a wedding. Funny, sad, disturbing but also informative and colourful. One of my top 10 favourite films
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on 12 August 2017
Lovingly depeicts the conflicts in modern Delhi with a sharp but sympathetic wit.
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on 14 February 2013
A lovely, gentle film, although exploring in part very serious issues. i would file this DVD next to my copy of Bride & Prejudice as they are both films that I can happily settle down with for a bit of "me" time. Strong plot, beautifully drawn characters, a sub-plot that draws you in just as much as the main theme and, of course, sumptuous costumes and set pieces.
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