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Return to Rajapur (2006)

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2:08 | Trailer
In a mystical Indian village, two women make a unique connection to a man they encounter.

Director:

Nanda Anand

Writer:

Nanda Anand
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Lynn Collins ... Sara Reardon
Kelli Garner ... Samantha Hartley / Samantha Doyle
Justin Theroux ... Jeremy Reardon
Manoj Bajpayee ... Jai Singh (as Manoj Bajpai)
Bhanu Goswami Bhanu Goswami ... Amar
Rita Joshi Rita Joshi ... Shefali
Yusuf Hussain Yusuf Hussain ... Vikram Singh Rathore
Vineet Kumar ... Lal (as Vinit Kumar)
Frank Langella ... Ned Bears
Sonal Jha Sonal Jha ... Hotel Maid
Gambeer Singh Gambeer Singh ... Gambeer
Tan Singh Tan Singh ... Clerk
Alam Bhai Alam Bhai ... Builder
Badri Singh Badri Singh ... Waiter
Bhom Singh Bhom Singh ... Waiter
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Storyline

Born and raised by her grandparents in Connecticut, Samantha Hartley (Kelli Garner) travels to Rajasthan, India, where her parents, Sara (Lynn Collins) and Jeremy (Justin Theroux) had their honey-moon during the year 1983. At Rajapur Railway Station she is met by Amar (Bhanu Goswami), who takes her to the Desert Hotel, even though she had planned to stay at Niwas Palace. When she insists, he takes her there, and she meets Vikram Singh Rathore (Yusuf Hussain) and his sullen cousin, Jai Singh (Manoj Bajpai), the owner, who makes it clear that she cannot reside there. She looks around, meets Jai's niece, Shefali (Rita Joshi), and is mistaken for a Grants and Proposal Student, Doyle. She decides to assume this name, is allocated a room, and sets about to investigate why her grandmother not only blamed but also filed a lawsuit against Jai for the death of her son. Written by rAjOo (gunwanti@hotmail.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Love conquers all, Life is defined by Destiny

Genres:

Drama | Romance

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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

India | USA

Language:

English | Hindi

Release Date:

26 April 2006 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Searching for Sara See more »

Filming Locations:

India See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The entire crew was housed at a palace during the shoot. See more »

Soundtracks

Pallo Latke Re Marho Pallo Latke
Performed by Vishal Vaid
Music by Richard Horowitz
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User Reviews

 
Great film that deserves to be seen
10 June 2008 | by nyfilmcritic-1See all my reviews

For a time in the early 1990s, playwright Tom Stoppard explored the intriguing concept of depicting a dual story of an historical event and the contemporary individuals investigating such an event, mainly through manuscripts and letters, most notably in ARCADIA. He addressed similar themes, though, in his 1991 radio play "In the Native State" which formed the nucleus for his 1995 stage work Indian INK. I was particularly reminded of the latter while watching RETURN TO RAJAPUR, the feature directorial debut of Nanda Anand, who also wrote the screenplay.

As in the Stoppard work, there's a mystery at the heart of the story. Samantha (Kelli Garner), a 22-year old American woman, arrives in Rajapur armed with a handful of photographs and letters. She's determined to uncover the true story behind events that unfolded in the early 1980s as they related to Jai Singh (Manoj Bajpai), the erudite owner of a dilapidated palace. Posing as a grant writer (who conveniently fails to turn up), Samantha begins her investigation into the lives of an American couple, Sara and Jeremy Reardon (Lynn Collins and Justin Theroux) who spent their honeymoon in the area. Samantha arrives with a set of preconceived notions that eventually are stripped away, although she only learns parts of the truth.

The film shifts easily between time frames and director Anand skillfully weaves the story in a compelling manner. My biggest complaint with the movie is that the ending felt rushed -- I was paying attention to everything that was occurring on screen, yet I became a bit confused. Perhaps it doesn't matter in the long run, but it marred an otherwise enjoyable experience.

The cast is uniformly good, with Garner (whom I found miscast in THE AVIATOR) delivering a fine turn. The strongest acting, though, is from Lynn Collins (who sounds like Gwyneth Paltrow) and Justin Theroux as the couple. He's an alcoholic who married a meal ticket and she's a woman who comes to the conclusion she might have made an error. Her decision is enhanced by her growing attraction to Jai Singh, and Bajpai makes the character believable, successfully essaying both the younger and contemporary versions. There's also fine supporting work from the always reliable Celia Weston and Frank Langella.

Although on a minor scale, RETURN TO RAJAPUR contains some of the lushness of THE English PATIENT or A PASSAGE TO India. Even so, it accomplishes a great deal, proving engrossing and enjoyable.


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