I don’t watch many Bollywood movies for one, very obvious, reason—there mostly bad; worse than Hollywood, in fact. But I did manage to watch Namastey London over the weekend to fulfill my annual quota, and it was a bad choice. The film, in all honesty, is a piece of crap.
Namastey London is the type of jingoistic tripe Bollywood regularly churns out that reminds the world (and many Indians, in fact) that India suffers from some sort of post-colonial inferiority complex. It’s a film replete with scenes and dialogues insulting the West (in this case, India’s colonial masters, the British). A lot of fists in the air, slap on the backs sort of shtick one expects from a mediocre film like this and the cheap patriotism it portrays.
The story is the typical diaspora story. An Indian (Punjabi) family living in England: with a traditional father and a submissive mother and their out-of-control, westernized daughter. They don’t like the fact that she’s Western or that she’s involved with an Englishman (an evil, patronizing gora!), even though she has lived in England all her life. What do her parents expect to be, a traditional Punjabi girl?
Anyway, make a long story short. Parents decide daughter needs a strong Punjabi husband, and trick her into going to India in order to fix her marriage. Parents find the boy, like him, and arrange the marriage. Daughter resists until the end, while secretly planning to marry the Englishman, who, by the way, is wealthier than Queen Elizabeth II. Daughter finds that Punjabi husband is not some rube from the hinterlands of Punjab, but a modern, English-speaking man. Suffice it to say, she leaves her gora fiancé at the altar and goes back to India with Punjabi husband to live happily ever after. This is Bollywood’s ending, and it’s so typical. There are dozen films before Namastey London that do a much better job.
One wonder why Indians immigrate to other countries, which give them opportunities India could not, and then denigrate that country because of incompatible cultural issues—dating, religious, etc. The list is virtually endless.
Anyway, avoid this film. Katrina Kaif cannot act or speak a lick of Hindi. Mercifully, the only positive thing I can say about Namastey London is the fact that it was only two hours long.