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Rodrigo Duarte Clark
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'MEET THE PATELS': Three and a Half Stars (Out of Five)
A comedic documentary flick; about an Indian-American actor, who's been single most of his life, that agrees to allow his traditional parents, to set him up with a potential bride (on a trip to India). The film was directed by Ravi Patel (who also stars in the movie), and his sister Geeta. Geeta also filmed most of the documentary, in really poor quality video, and her footage is mixed with comedic animated sequences too (explaining unfilmed plot points). The film is interesting, and funny; it also has a great leading man performance, in Ravi Patel.
Ravi Patel is a 29-year-old actor; who's played a lot of clichéd Indian-American 'bit parts' (in many movies). He's been single most of his life, and just broke up with his first girlfriend (Audrey Wauchope); due to a fear his parents wouldn't accept her (Audrey is an American redhead). On a trip with his family to India, he decides to allow his parents (Vasant and Chapa), to set him up with an Indian girl; in the traditional Indian family way. The film examines the concept of arranged couples, while Ravi's sister (Geeta) films the whole thing (she's also been single most of her life).
The movie is interesting, in a very comedic (but informative) way. It's also extremely personal at times; and Ravi Patel is very funny, and charming. I enjoyed the movie, quite a bit, but it's a little hard for me to believe it's all completely genuine. Like a lot of modern documentary films, the movie seems more like really creative performance art; than like watching real people (acting completely genuine), in completely real situations (it seems at least partially staged). But I love performance art, I practice it a lot myself; and I love entertaining documentary flicks, like this, too.
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