Paul's Review of The Namesake
A finely crafted film, with a kind of realism to it that you rarely find in dramas of its kind. This heartfelt search for identity and worth is moderately paced, and reveals its story and emotions slowly and carefully. The parents, perfectly played by Tabu and Irffan Khan provide a lot of heart to center this film.
Gogol's struggles with his own identity are well played, and the love stories are a little predictable, but hone close to the truth. Those are the only parts of the film that I felt were a little contrived, but the scenes themselves are never overdone, and there are some painfully true moments of emotion coming off the screen. Kal Penn does a nice job as the young man stuck between two cultures.
I never read the book, so I probably would haven enjoyed it even more, but it's worth seeing, if you want a thoughtful look at life, love and family.