Between sweeping, extraordinary scenes within a plethora of Indian locations and a plot which is Bollywood inspired yet grounded in reality, this highly moving film is a must-see for those who love a good romance/adventure. And by this, I mean "good", not a Hollywood or Bollywood easy and contrived happy ending. East meets West in a different take on the buddy film. The performances are inspired and brilliant, the cinematography epic and the plot entertaining, engaging and poignant without a trace of schmaltz or cheap tugging at heartstrings. HARI OM is a sweet film that won't rot your teeth. See it!
First the positives - the acting is fantastic. Wonderful ensemble work, very talented bunch who are a joy to watch work together. Peter Mullan is outstanding. The problem with this story is that it isn't sure what story it wants to tell. Without ruining it, it wanders quiet a bit. There is also some sloppy editing which confuses. There are subplots introduced which just vanish at strange moments in the script. The beginning is full of promise, but it very quickly becomes several films you've seen many times before: forced sentimentality, clichéd and predictable. Not a bad movie, some beautiful shots, but I fail to see what all the fuss was about at Sundance.
This disturbing, moving and ultimately uplifting film of 20 years of a gay young man's life as he grows up with a schizophrenic mother and questionably sane grandparents in Houston, Texas is one of the most moving films I have ever seen. Unpretentious, passionate and blossoming through a family situation which would have killed most people long ago, Jonathan weaves home movies with pop culture and facts of his upbringing into a story worthy of an Academy Award in which his immense creative talent sustains him and helped him to survive, as I imagine it still does. An often shocking yet compassionate portrait of a highly dysfunctional American family unit. See it.