Saturday, August 22, 2009
The Namesake. B+
Mira Nair's drama about family ties, loyalty, and race is a vibrant, refreshing piece of work, though certainly not flawless. It's about an Indian couple moving to New York and their son, played by Kal Penn, who tries to discover if he should stay true to his Indian roots. The movie certainly has a heart, but it seemed as if a first-draft script in dire need of rehashing was used. The movie didn't feel methodical. It felt as if too many short scenes were jumbled in when it could have been better if the film focused quality rather than quantity. But it's still a thoughtful piece of work, and obviously personal to the director, Nair. Every performance is solid, and though the melodrama seeps in a tad too much, for the most part it stays clear of sentimentality.