The general rule is that when it comes to movie sequels is that for every movie sequel that does justice to the original film, there are many others that tarnish the reputation and quality of the first film.
Thankfully, The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (2015) does not tarnish the reputation of it’s predecessor.
The movie starts 8 months after the first film ended. The residents of the The Exotic Marigold Hotel remain as we left them. Muriel D0nnelly (Dame Maggie Smith) runs the hotel with Sonny Kapoor (Dev Patel). Sonny is eager to expand the hotel. Evelyn Greenslade (Dame Judi Dench) is having a will they/won’t they relationship with Douglas Ainslie (Bill Nighy). But his marriage to Jean (Penelope Wilton) might be over emotionally, but not legally. Madge Hardcastle (Celia Imrie) is caught between two local men.
Ronald Pickup and Diana Hardcastle (Norman Cousins and Carol Parr) are comfortably together, but their relationship is being tested. Sonny is also in the middle of finalizing wedding preparations with his fiance, Sunaina (Tina Desai), but his insecurities come out in the person of the best friend of his soon to be brother in law. Added to the cast is American author wannabe Guy Chambers (Richard Gere) and newcomer Lavinia Beech (Tamsin Greig).
I liked the first film and I was eager to to see this one. Unlike many sequels, this movie did not let me down. It was as charming, funny and entertaining as it’s predecessor. What both movies have taught me is that life and learning does not end when we reach a certain age. We can be 70 years old and still be learning something new every day. We can be 70 years old and still feel the butterflies and uncertainty of new love.
This movie is wonderful. It proves that age is nothing but a number and life’s ups and down’s continue. It also proves that female performers can draw in audiences at 70 as they did at 35.
I absolutely recommend this film.
The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel is presently on DVD.