The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

7.32 h 3 min2012X-RayPG-13
British pensioners on a tight budget move to a retirement home in india; their adventures there giving them a new lease on life.
John Madden
Tom WilkinsonBill Nighy
English [CC]
Audio languages
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Fox Searchlight
PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)
Content advisory
Nuditysexual contentfoul languagedrug use
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4.7 out of 5 stars

15996 global ratings

  1. 83% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 12% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 3% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 1% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 1% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

Miss DebReviewed in the United States on March 17, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Gets better!
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I had my doubts in the beginning ---- even though I adore Dame (and incomparable) Maggie Smith, Dame Judith Dench, Celia Imerie (I LOVE his woman!), Tom Williamson, Bill Nighy & Mr. Pickup... whose first name eludes me at the moment ---- but, it turned out quite well. I gave in to the urge to watch it one more time before my rental expired. I found I enjoyed it even more. Owning the movie, I now watch it.... of course, only in order to show others who have not seen it(!) ..... often. Great film! Charming, witty, funny, sad --- to the point of tears in two deserving scenes ---- romantic. Speaking from experience ---- the film offers an intelligent and spot-on(!) telling of the physical, psychological, sexual and often tragic results of not having died yet! Many of those close to 'the elderly (or much worse..... elderly AND infirm (and it takes so little to be labeled "infirm" after having been labeled "elderly!") in geographic proximity and by genetic (family) bonds ---- make no effort to conceal their opinion that you have out lived your usefulness and your necessity, i.e. you are no longer wanted or needed.... you are, bluntly, no more than a nuisance... at best; At worst: You are an unwanted dilemma to be dealt with, straining the patience of the ones you carried & cared for (physically and financially), raised, and brought into adulthood ---- or what passes for adulthood today. This film addresses this in an easily understandable manner ..... so that everyone can grasp the truth. There is also a youthful romance that crosses class boundaries.... which in India seem to be even more ridiculous and unkind than in the US and, apparently, Britain. SO it is a film the young and the not-so-young can enjoy. Highly recommended. The cast alone makes this film worth a look! (The cast is why I watched in the first place ----- I adore them all ---- but, the British ladies of the cast ( I am shamed by not being able to remember the names of two of the ladies) are among the best in their profession --- the best of yesterday, today, and ---- without a doubt! ---- tomorrow! Go Girls!
10 people found this helpful
ParisReviewed in the United States on June 12, 2021
1.0 out of 5 stars
This was dreadful.
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This did not work for me. Awfully agendist with all the wrong, tiresome and predictable agendas. I expected so much more with this cast of characters. This was not best or exotic, and it left me feeling like I needed a shower inside and out. I did not finish past the funeral pyre. It was not only a waste of my time, but left me with a deficit of time, inner peace and joy on the other side of it.
8 people found this helpful
Marty FieldReviewed in the United States on March 6, 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
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The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel is located in Jaipur, India. It has a great brochure, which portrays it in glowing terms, and attracts the attention of several different aging British people. They don't look forward to their retirement years in England, in tiny apartments and with mechanized systems dealing with them. There is also the expense factor, wanting to stay in a place where their funds will stretch farther. The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel seems to be a good bet and they all move there. However, they find they are the first to arrive and the glowing promise is more the future dream of its young Manager. They have to cope with its shortcomings, a culture and people they don't know, and the different people within their group. The enthusiastic, but disorganized, young Manager and the new situations gradually grow on them and they begin to relax and like their surroundings. The star British cast (including Dame Judi Dench, Dame Maggie Smith and Bill Nighty) does a fantastic job. The street scenes and views of Jaipur are great and give the viewer an impression of what it really would be like to live there.
31 people found this helpful
The Tally HoReviewed in the United States on November 5, 2019
4.0 out of 5 stars
Review without Spoilers - Pros & Cons
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The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel is a 2011 British comedy-drama film starring Judi Dench, Celia Imrie, Bill Nighy, Ronald Pickup, Maggie Smith, Tom Wilkinson, & Penelope Wilton, as a group of British pensioners moving to a retirement hotel in India, run by the young and eager Sonny, played by Dev Patel. Overall I enjoyed this film, here are the pros & cons, I hope this helps you.
1. Acting is very good especially the parts acted by Tom Wilkinson & Maggie Smith
2. Well written & good use of foreshadowing
3. Great themes, motivating, thought provoking, & inspiring
4. Nice ending
1. Film starts of very slowly & takes some time before you can get into the characters
2. Cinematography is bland and could have been so much more vivid & culturally interesting
7 people found this helpful
GottaDoSumptinReviewed in the United States on December 23, 2021
5.0 out of 5 stars
This Film is Special – Heartwarming and Bittersweet
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Let’s start with Outsourcing Old Age – the concept of outsourcing retirement, "taking our outsourcing of everyday tasks like banking and customer service one step further" – and then take it to a ramshackle hotel in Jaipur, India, run by an inept youthful manager (Dev Patel).

A legendary ensemble cast – the British pensioners include: a widow (Judi Dench); a phlegmatic (Bill Nighy); a pessimist (Penelope Wilton); a xenophobe (Maggie Smith); an aristocrat (Tom Wilkinson); a lothario (Ronald Pickup); and, a romantic (Celia Imrie). They begin their journey as strangers and become friends. It can be called a romantic comedy or drama or dramedy. Whatever one would wish to describe it, it is worth watching more than once.

The film is narrated by Judi Dench as her character, Evelyn, who keeps a diary to record daily events and her thoughts. This film is special – it made me believe I’m not so old and useless after all. Like the characters, I am in the midst of a new beginning, with decades of experience behind me. I used to say, as we all do of a certain age, “if I knew then what I know now” After watching this movie, I’ll say, “why live in the past and what could have been, move forward and see what can be.”
One person found this helpful
michael john madineReviewed in the United States on June 22, 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
"Living the Life to the Very End!"
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Fantastic,high quality,heartwarming movie,about a bunch of golden oldies who go to live in India in order to better enjoy their retirement years, in a once elegant "pukka sahib" hotel.
It has a great cast of actors,an exotic Asian location,a superb story line,with generous touches of humour and some bittersweet reality stirred well in to the curry,and I found myself wondering why I had'nt thought of going to a magic place like this when I gave up the wonderful world of work many years ago!
If movies of this sort,no bad language either, appeal to you,don't hesitate,its thoughtful,intelligent,and above all,gentle,and you can buy it to enjoy with the whole family and,who knows,if you're a golden oldie too,you may find the"kids"looking at you in a slightly different way,at the end of it!
Very high Feelgood factor on this one,so go for it!
15 people found this helpful
D. WardReviewed in the United States on March 10, 2017
4.0 out of 5 stars
The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel prepares you for the 2nd Best
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So I saw the 2nd Best Exotic Marigold Hotel before I ever knew of this one where it all began. I had no idea there was a "first" until my sister asked if I had seen the "first." The first time I watched this "first" version of Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, I thought it a bad first attempt and terribly depressing compared to the 2nd Best Exotic. Seriously, I did. The only good thing I could say about it was that it gave background to the Second Best Exotic. I bought this as a companion to The Second Best Exotic, so that I could watch them in order. I still feel that the first one is just providing background to the second, but I like it better now than the first time I watched it. I think that the actors were well chosen, and I enjoyed seeing them in these types of roles (different than usual). I, also, like the entire story line.
13 people found this helpful
David B. SableReviewed in the United States on April 20, 2015
4.0 out of 5 stars
Interwoven threads of several characters discovering and getting what they want - A nice break from the stress of real life
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Definitely a feel good movie - starts out in chaos and conflict but everyone discovers what they really want and gets it in the end - just like real life (:>). Think of it as several Hallmark of Lifeline movies all going on at the same time. The best part was that the unfolding of people's stories, needs, and how it all came together. There were as well some touching moments as people faced aging, usefulness, change, adaptation, and regret.

Of course,the movie had the obligatory reference to racism, being Gay, and standing up for the love in your heart woven into the story line in order to make it a proper Hollywood vehicle as well as taking on being widowed, loneliness and codependency.

The corniest part of the movie is when the hotel manager confronts his mother with his love for a girl his mother does not approve and the mother, resolved in her refusal, is suddenly wistfully taken back to a day when she stood for love over the dictates of her parents. Pllllleeeeeessssseeee! Would have been more honest if the mother just disowned the son and they struggled through life courageously.

If you are in a place of stress over the problems in your life and the horrendous things happening in the world's news, a little fantasy where everything works out in the end of a two hour movie might be the relief you need.
17 people found this helpful
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