There is a common complaint among older moviegoers that the majority of releases today are tailored to a specific demographic and their group gets short shift. Attempting to fill that void is The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. It’s a British production and features a high power cast of outstanding sexagenarian thespians that includes Dame Judi Dench, Bill Nighy, Maggie Smith and Tom Wilkinson to name just a few.
It’s set in India and uses that colourful and frenetic local as an integral part of the storyline. It’s a tale of redemption amongst an older generation of Brits that are bucking against feeling like they have reached their used by dates. They end up at a hotel in India under false pretences and find that the luxury hotel the ads spoke about has been replaced by a run down complex run by Sonny (played with good humour by Dev Patel of Slumdog Millionaire).
The set up is somewhat conventional but what really lets the movie down is how predictable the script is. This is not helped at all by an overbearing soundtrack that telegraphs almost every salient moment in the film. The actors try as they might have little to work with other that establishing their characters eccentricities.
Films with sophistication, complex characterization and involving plot lines will always have a place up on the big screen even if they appeal to only a certain segment of the audience but when you pander to a specific group you still need to involve them regardless of age or demographics.