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July 31, 2006 | by  | in Film |
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Mistress of the Spices

This film promised to be intriguing, and had a cast of well known actors such as Dylan McDermot (ex The Practice) and Aishwarya Rai (India’s hottest export since curry), to boost my expectations. However, as soon as the opening sequence started, my expectations veered downhill.

Tilo (Rai) owns a traditional Indian spice shop in America and serves the local community with the magical powers of Indian spices that us Westerners don’t believe in, and that only she knows how to control. However, she must only follow three strict rules if she is to harness these powers. One: she must never leave the shop. Two: she must not let anyone touch her. Three: she can only use the spices’ powers to help others. One would think after years of devotion she would be quite strict on herself, but no, as soon as she sees Doug (Dylan McDermot) riding around on his big motorcycle she forgets everything she was brought up to believe and soon breaks all the rules. Needless to say, bad things start happening to her customers and the spices turn on her.

Slowly the movie dives headlong into a pool of ridiculousness and confusion. It also fails to create that disorienting feeling of wonder that foreign movies can evoke. For all its promise, it’s just an American movie with Indian actors. I couldn’t help but gawk at the bad ‘special’ effects. Bollywood films are known for their luscious and sensual cinematography, and aside from two chillies in very compromising poses, this film failed to deliver.

If you believe in happy endings and ‘the power of love’ then I’m sure you would sit through it with tears in your eyes hanging on every word, but let’s face it, you don’t. Good points about it: the main actress is a fox, I’m not the only one who talks to my food and thinks that ‘spices’ have magical powers. Bad points: The Plot, enough said.

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