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The Namesake

The movie The Namesake was based on the book The Namesake.

Which one did you like better, the movie or the book?  Right now there is 1 vote for the book, and 2 votes for the movie.

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Movie details for The Namesake

The movie was released in 2006 and directed by Mira Nair, who also directed Vanity Fair (2004). More information on the movie is available on Amazon.com and also IMDb.

Actors on this movie include Tabu, Irfan Khan, Kal Penn, Zuleikha Robinson, Marcus Collins, Glenne Headly, Rupak Ginn, Aaron Yoo, Josh Grisetti, Jessica Blank, Bobby Steggert, Justin Rosini, Allison Lee Ritter, B.C. Parekh, Benjamin Bauman, Sabyasachi Chakravarthy, Jacinda Barrett, Gary Cowling, Sebastian Roché and Payal Sethi.

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Book details for The Namesake

The Namesake was written by Jhumpa Lahiri. The book was published in 2003 by Mariner Books. More information on the book is available on Amazon.com.

 

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Any talk of The Namesake--Jhumpa Lahiri's follow-up to her Pulitzer Prize-winning debut, Interpreter of Maladies--must begin with a name: Gogol Ganguli. Born to an Indian academic and his wife, Gogol is afflicted from birth with a name that is neither Ind... Read More
Any talk of The Namesake--Jhumpa Lahiri's follow-up to her Pulitzer Prize-winning debut, Interpreter of Maladies--must begin with a name: Gogol Ganguli. Born to an Indian academic and his wife, Gogol is afflicted from birth with a name that is neither Indian nor American nor even really a first name at all. He is given the name by his father who, before he came to America to study at MIT, was almost killed in a train wreck in India. Rescuers caught sight of the volume of Nikolai Gogol's short stories that he held, and hauled him from the train. Ashoke gives his American-born son the name as a kind of placeholder, and the awkward thing sticks.

Awkwardness is Gogol's birthright. He grows up a bright American boy, goes to Yale, has pretty girlfriends, becomes a successful architect, but like many second-generation immigrants, he can never quite find his place in the world. There's a lovely section where he dates a wealthy, cultured young Manhattan woman who lives with her charming parents. They fold Gogol into their easy, elegant life, but even here he can find no peace and he breaks off the relationship. His mother finally sets him up on a blind date with the daughter of a Bengali friend, and Gogol thinks he has found his match. Moushumi, like Gogol, is at odds with the Indian-American world she inhabits. She has found, however, a circuitous escape: "At Brown, her rebellion had been academic ... she'd pursued a double major in French. Immersing herself in a third language, a third culture, had been her refuge--she approached French, unlike things American or Indian, without guilt, or misgiving, or expectation of any kind." Lahiri documents these quiet rebellions and random longings with great sensitivity. There's no cleverness or showing-off in The Namesake, just beautifully confident storytelling. Gogol's story is neither comedy nor tragedy; it's simply that ordinary, hard-to-get-down-on-paper commodity: real life. --Claire Dederer