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A Peck on the Cheek

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A young Indian writer decides to adopt a Sri Lankan baby, but because the law prohibits single men from adopting, he also proposes marriage to a beautiful young woman from his village. Nine years later the couple decide to tell their adopted daughter the truth about her past, and the girl and her father journey to Sri Lanka to track down her birth mother, a search that plays out against a backdrop of chaos and violence. This 2002 Indian feature by writer-director Mani Ratnam is unabashedly melodramatic at times, but his passionate conviction fortifies the tragic and inspirational aspects of the story. Like most Bollywood movies, this is studded with musical numbers, and the hypnotic score by A.R. Rahman becomes a crucial element in shaping the drama. In Tamil and Sinhalese with subtitles. 136 min. Facets Cinematheque.

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