In "Before the Rains," it is 1937 in Kerala, India where Henry Moores(Linus Roache) is a planter who is building a road to help his business, risking everything to finish it before the monsoons start. On the personal side, even though he is married, he is carrying on an affair with Sajani(Nandita Das), the family maid, who is trapped in an abusive marriage. One day, the lovers are noticed in a sacred grove by a pair of boys.
If "Before the Rains" sounds as predictable and obvious as every other doomed romance you have ever heard of, you would be at least partially right.(What was it Anton Chekhov said about guns, again?) What separates this movie from others of its ilk is the lack of sympathy given to its lead English character who has no true regard for India which is also undergoing spasms of independence. That along with lush cinematography combine to provide a sincere feel for a time and place.