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Savouring a Delicious Movie | Caroline Graham

100 foot 3I don’t often go to the movies. I tend to catch up on the latest films on flights from Mumbai to London and back again. If you time it right, and don’t hang about when you get on the plane, you can fit three movies in – sometimes four if they’re short and snappy.

But yesterday, on a rainy Sunday afternoon, one of my friends suggested we go and see ‘100 Foot Journey’. I didn’t know what it was about but I agreed to go along as I didn’t have any other plans.

I have been thinking about it non-stop since Sunday night. It’s given me a kind of happy disposition and left me feeling very inspired about love, life and food.

It’s worth pointing out what a different experience going to the movies is for a foreigner in India. The National Anthem for one, took me by surprise. You’ve just settled down to your popcorn when you have to stand up again. I’m not criticising this practice at all – in fact I would quite like to sing ‘Flower of Scotland’ when I went to the movies in my home country. It would definitely leave me feeling quite patriotic. Another difference is the fact that you can get served food and drink at your seat – not having to wait in long queues is a great bonus. And yesterday at the PVR cinema in Mumbai’s Phoenix Mall, me and my three expat pals (and one local) were delighted when we realised the seats reclined. What luxury!

But what moved me to put pen to paper today, so to speak, was the film itself. Since ‘The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’ have I not seen such a beautiful movie. I have been thinking about it non-stop since Sunday night. It’s given me a kind of happy disposition and left me feeling very inspired about love, life and food.

The film had it all – comedy, sadness, love, competition, setbacks and triumphs and I’m delighted to say also had a happy ending.

‘100 Foot Journey’ is about an Indian family who leave India, after experiencing a tragedy, to find a new home in Europe. The son, Hassan, is a genius cook and after stumbling upon a picturesque village in France, they decide to stay and open an Indian restaurant, ‘Maison Mumbai’. The story unfolds, peppered with Indian spices, as the characters come to life. Om Puri was fabulous as the father while Manish Dayal played the talented handsome son. And when I thought the casting couldn’t get any better, in walked Helen Mirren as the ‘Diva Restauranteuse’ across the road, and the Maison Mumbai’s Michelin Star competition.

The film had it all – comedy, sadness, love, competition, setbacks and triumphs and I’m delighted to say also had a happy ending. The French scenery was gorgeous, the script was brilliant, the acting fabulous and the touch of Bollywood amidst a sleepy French village was priceless.

If you see any movie this week – see this one -and if you can, take your mum along – she’ll love it too.

I think why I liked the movie so much was how it combined many of my own personal experiences: I lived in France for a few years and speak fluent French. I met Helen Mirren when I was at school playing an extra in the movie ‘Heavenly Pursuits’ in which she starred and I now obviously live in India and regularly enjoy the culinary delights this country has to offer.

I still have a spring in step and intend to What’s App my mom tonight and tell her she has to go and see it. She came to visit me recently in Mumbai, and as a family we spent a few summers in France, so she’ll love it as well. If you see any movie this week – see this one -and if you can, take your mum along – she’ll love it too.

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