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Bride and Prejudice
A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this film contains a fistfight and mild sexual situations -- there is kissing, and the cad of the film sweeps a naive young girl off her feet, and has to be chased down before he can take advantage of her. An unwanted pregnancy is mentioned, and there are mild references to homosexuality, including a chorus line of dancing transvestites.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
By director Gurinder Chadha, responsible for the great Bend it Like Beckham, BRIDE AND PREJUDICE is a pretty faithful retelling of Jane Austin's "Pride and Prejudice". Lalita (Aishwarya Rai) is the second oldest daughter of a well-to-do Indian family, celebrating the arranged engagement of their oldest to the wealthy and handsome Balraj Bingley (Naveen Andrews), an Indian living in Britain. He's come to meet his future wife, and he's brought his aristocratic sister Kiran (Indira Varma) and American buddy William Darcy (Martin Henderson). It's Darcy's first time in India, and he's having trouble adjusting. So when a huge musical number breaks out, he just doesn't feel comfortable jumping into the swirling throng and dancing. To Lalita, he comes off as aloof, and she dismisses him as a boorish American, more interested in making money than in the beautiful culture around him. As in Austin's novel, Lalita and Darcy repeatedly grow closer and draw apart.
Is it any good?
Bride and Prejudice is a fluffy Bollywood-style musical romance that will be fun for teens and parents who can forgive some half-baked lyrics. The film is beautiful -- the musical bits are swirls of choreographed color, with dozens of synchronized dancers reminiscent of Busby Berkeley productions.
The music never quite rises to the level of the dancing, however, and the tepid English lyrics in particular grow tiring as the movie goes on, as. The actors are charming, though, and the inevitable crisis near the end of the film gives the movie a needed pick-up.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how money affects the characters in the film. Which do the characters care about more, the cultural differences between India, England, and America or the economic differences? How does Lalita's perception of Darcy as a wealthy American affect her attitude toward him? How does Bijili seem to feel about America versus India?
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