September 10 2015
Short review of indie film ‘Brahmin Bulls’…
‘BRAHMIN BULLS’ is a gentle, unflashy film that has a lot going for it, not least Roshan Seth’s own central supporting performance.
He perfectly embodies the Boston Brahmin he plays: a tad arrogant, self-absorbed and demanding – he doesn’t understand how different his son, Sidharth’s (Sendhil Ramamurthy), life has become.
Almost unannounced he arrives on his son’s doorstep and seems perfectly oblivious to the chaos around him.
Sid’s wife has left him, his once promising career as an architect is in freefall, and all he can do is bicker, mope and smoke weed.
The tennis in this film acts an important motif – both father and son play with competitive intent and the consequences are not pretty and strongly hinted at, in the rather unattractive title.
Mahesh Pailoor shows a deft touch as a director of a film with substance and there are echoes of stories contained within Indian American author Jhumpa Lahiri’s debut Pulitzer prize winning title, ‘Interpreter of Maladies’ (1999). Nice also to see the Californian backdrop add to Sid’s sense of drift and malaise – most noticeably ruptured when Dad and son gatecrash a beach wedding and enjoy the attention (as in the picture above).
What is most impressive about the script by Pailoor and his wife Anu Pradhan is their subtle rendering of Indian culture in what is essentially, a story about a father and son with unfinished business.
It’s a shame we don’t see more like this – themes that play out well on the page in novels, can just as admirably be transferred to the big screen when you have a good script, able direction and a stellar cast. (Sailesh Ram)
ACV rating: *** ½ (out of five)