Cast: Tom Hanks and Sarita Choudhury
Director: Tom Tykwer
10-12PG D L N
Leon van Nierop
The names Dave Eggers and Tom Tykwer may not mean much to you. Enough to say that both are known for their eccentric styles, daring exploration of themes and weird, eclectic characters. Eggers, on whose novel this unique film is based, has also written Promised Land and Where the Wild Things Are, while Tykwer was responsible for the baffling Cloud Atlas, as well as the experimental Run, Lola, Run. So you know that you are not going to see a sequel to Mother’s Day!
A businessman, played to perfection by Tom Hanks, travels to Saudi Arabia to demonstrate a hologram to an Arab king in the hope of selling a system to him. But he is a lost soul between two different lives, one of them a failed marriage and the other the exploration of a new culture. He may lose the plot occasionally but rediscovers his soul in an alien and hostile country that still manages to make sense on a bizarre level, especially after he meets a beautiful Arab doctor, played by Sarita Choudhury, who is on the brink of divorce.
The weird situations he lands in and how he manages to make sense of it all are themes that may give art movie lovers great pleasure. It is slow and an acquired taste, but thoroughly enjoyable if you watch a film with all your senses and brain cells switched on.