‘A Suitable Boy’ Review

In his almost 1,500-page epic Postpartition A suitable guy, one of the longest-running novels in the English language, author Vikram Seth weaves the stories of two middle-class families in North India who navigate acrimonious negotiations, marriage negotiations, and conflict. political religious conflict when their newly independent nation broke free from British colonial rule. Falling somewhere between the escapist soap (the Welsh screenwriter’s bread and butter, Andrew Davies) and the sensational family story (the lifeblood of the Indian-American director, Mira Nair), six BBC’s heartbreaking episode A Suitable Boy the adaptation seems unable to capture Seth’s ideological breadth, opting instead for accessible lewdness. It is one of the most expensive British small pieces ever produced, but still lacks the visual and textual artistry that a story of this range requires to truly enthrall the viewer. It airs on Acorn in the US

Davies and Nair are not bound by time or money, but by imagination. David O. Selznick’s landmark film adaptation of Gone With the Wind deftly condenses Margaret Mitchell’s 1,000-plus-page bestseller into a run of less than four hours without sacrificing scale, softness, or character. Immersion by Saverio Costanzo My great friendElena Ferrante’s . four-season HBO serial adaptation Neapolitan novelsonly enhances its original source material through the lushness of its cinematic grandeur. My great friend a success partly due to its naturalism, Costanzo and his directors allowed the story to breathe in and out in its native setting – Neapolitan and Italy – despite the book’s international popularity. .

Key point

Obviously a better story than what’s depicted on the screen.

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I can only wonder how A suitable guy could have skyrocketed if the film’s cast had been allowed to converse mainly in Hindi, Hindustani, and Urdu instead of just piecing together code snippets of these languages ​​into predominantly English dialogue. For a TV series, at its core, alluding to the disastrous long-term consequences of colonial hegemony, it is certain to prioritize and concretize Western tastes, especially Anglophilic.

A suitable guy opens about a Hindu wedding intertwined between the Mehras and the Kapoors, two international families still reeling from the breakup of the British Raj and the religious discord that led to the two nations of India and Pakistan. divided. Their lives will soon be disrupted by violence. Mehras had lost considerable stature following the death of their locomotive engineer patriarch, resulting in his widow struggling to earn outstanding matches for their adult children. The eldest son Arun (Vivek Gomber), a snob, is married to a city girl (Shahana Goswami) who sleeps around and shatters his dead father-in-law’s military medals to make I have a pair of earrings. The eldest daughter Savita (Rasika Dugal) falls in love with a lowly university professor. With an incompetent youngest son that confuses her at every turn, Rupa Mehra (Mahira Kakkar)’s (Mahira Kakkar) last chance to win is to marry her ardent college student daughter, Lata (Tanya Maniktala), for “the right guy”.

Or is the “fit boy” of the title the heir to Kapoors Maan’s (Ishaan Khatter) honor? Willful and hedonistic, Maan has a same-sex friendship with his Muslim best friend (Shubham Saraf) until he meets and falls in love with his mother’s sexy maidservant Saeeda Bai (Tabu), displeased his politician father. Maan and Saeeda Bai are so captivated that she asked him to go with her sister’s tutor back to his feudal village so that Maan could learn to read and write in Urdu, the love language in the literal sense. her black. While Maan entrenched himself in the war of the oppressed villagers, emerging as a folk hero to them, Lata found himself caught between three suitors: the fiery scholar Kabir (Danesh Razvi), Resolute shoemaker Haresh (Namit Das) and ostentatious poet Amit (Mikhail Sen).

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Although Lata exhibits a rather quiet personality, Maniktala shines brightly in this part, keeping our protagonist smitten with charms that we can’t gather through character development. . Das also showed vulnerability as a self-made man, proud of his creativity and business acumen: “When I returned from England, I realized that the British had leave us free to go barefoot. India needs the shoes. “

In some of the series’ most evocative scenes, Haresh invites Lata and her mother to lunch at his boarding house, and like a child showing off his favorite preschool toy, they give they toured his neat little bedroom and then the tanneries he managed. The women were startled by the stench of animal flesh as he strode through the barn, but the man smiled, in fact very playful as he demonstrated his upward mobility. and by extension his intellectual curiosity. Lata, Kabir and Amit may be the ups and downs of their burgeoning republic, but Haresh is the real visionary among them.

I know A suitable guy going thin from its opening title, a watercolor-style animated sequence of images that act as an eerie rendition of the setting. We see the colorful flashes of trains and bloody bodies, of macaws and doll-like babies that set the dull tone for a series that should carry more gravity. And like a cartoon, A suitable guy caricatures a time and place, emphasizing and prolonging the movement of an overarching narrative until it matches the plot’s action rather than the level of emotion.

My great friend respects Italian realism through its attention to cinematography, editing and editing techniques. Another auteur behind A suitable guy may have borrowed from the delicate textures of master Indian filmmaker Satyajit Ray, who tackled the oppressive anguish of rich femininity in the 1964s. Charulata and chronicles the heartbreaking trials of early adulthood in 1955-1959 The Apu . trio. Instead, Nair startled us with confusing sex scenes and unsophisticated cinematography. The power of Seth’s story remains intact; Davies and Nair’s stylization almost gets in the way.

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Actors: Tanya Maniktala, Ishaan Khatter, Tabu, Namit Das, Mahira Kakkar, Vivek Gomber, Ram Kapoor, Danesh Razvi, Shahana Goswami, Mikhail Sen, Shubham Saraf, Mahira Kakkar
Written by: Andrew Davies
Directed by: Mira Nair

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