Like an arthouse version of The Avengers
, a super team of British character actors join forces in an ensemble film set in a crumbling hotel in Jaipur, India. For various reasons, mostly financial, Judi Dench, Bill Nighy, Tom Wilkinson and Maggie Smith have outsourced their retirement to a deceptively Photoshopped residence run by an enthusiastic dreamer (Dev Patel). It's clear from the outset that culture shock will be transformative, but sophisticated audiences respond to the characters' dread of age and ageism, when even the possibility of romance or adventure evaporates. The authentic atmosphere forgoes stereotyping non-British actors (including Bollywood stalwarts like Lillete Dubey as Dev's mother). I would rather watch Bill Nighy stand and think than suffer another blockbuster's CGI explosions, and I can't help but wonder if the haters would feel differently with a younger, hotter cast. This is a film for those starved for simple cinematic pleasures.