Yes, it’s nice to work with solid source material, but that doesn’t mean, let’s say a book like Tess of the D’Ubervilles will translate well on the big screen. Having never read the book, it’s impossible to judge how author Thomas Hardy handled the character arcs there, but in Michael Winterbottom’s feature film, they have a beginning and end, but no middle whatsoever.
While on vacation with a group of friends, the son of a prominent property developer, Jay (Riz Ahmed), falls for a beautiful resort employee, Trishna (Freida Pinto). When not at the resort, Trishna works by her father’s side, as they need every little bit of money they can make in order to sustain their family’s daily life. When Jay finds out Trishna’s father was debilitated in a car accident, he offers to hire Trishna at the hotel his father insisted he manage. Trishna accepts, packs her things and leaves her family behind in order to support them.
Having never read the book upon which the film is based, the series of events in this film are shocking to say the least. At first, the story is your typical romance set to the tune of an extreme financial divide. While both Jay and Trisha are likable characters and easy to connect with, the fact that Jay is the first we meet makes it tough to switch gears and experience the story from Trishna’s point of view.
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