DVD Review: Viceroy’s House
New nations are rarely born in peace… India, 1947: Lord Mountbatten (Hugh Bonneville) is dispatched, along with his wife Edwina (Gillian Anderson), to New Delhi to oversee the country’s transition from British rule to independence. Taking his place in the resplendent mansion known as the Viceroy’s House, Mountbatten arrives hopeful for a peaceful transference of power. But ending centuries of colonial rule in a country divided by deep religious and cultural differences proves no easy undertaking, setting off a seismic struggle that threatens to tear India apart.
Sounds like an interesting little period drama, right?
Well, it does end up being quite the drama, but first you have to get through the struggle of the first two thirds of the film, that leaves you feeling that you’re stuck in a very dry lecture on British Colonial History. The film in these first two thirds is only saved by the fantastic Gillian Anderson who nails the character of a head strong woman who sees whats going on but is trapped in a male dominated society.
The little doomed love story going on in the background is just plain annoying.
But then, in an instant, everything changes, I can’t say why or what, because, spoilers! But at this point Viceroy’s House becomes a drama with the essential ingredient: DRAMA. The film transforms into an engaging expose into British politics and the lengths powerful men will go to to orchestrate their will into any given situation. The last third literally saves Viceroy’s House and makes having to endure the rest of the film worth while.
Rating: M Content may disturb.