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The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

HD   PG-13

John Madden

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About the Movie

An award-winning, all-star cast, led by Judi Dench, Bill Nighy, Maggie Smith and Tom Wilkinson, lights up this “buoyant comedy laced with genuine emotion”. When seven cash-strapped seniors decide to “outsource” their retirement to a resort in far-off India, friendship and romance blossom in the most unexpected ways. Smart, life-affirming and genuinely charming, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel is a “true classic that reminds us that it’s never too late to find love and a fresh beginning at any age”.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 153
  • Fresh: 119
  • Rotten: 34
  • Average Rating: 6.6/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Fresh: Besides its sterling cast, its ace in the hole is its pungent depiction of Jaipur's teeming streets, which give an otherwise well-mannered movie a blinding splash of color. – Stephen Holden, New York Times, May 3, 2012

Fresh: There are brutal truths about the declining years in Best Exotic, from loneliness to financial woes that can't be solved by getting a new job, but they are amply padded with comedy and cheery messages about acceptance; this is no bitter pill to swallow. – Mary F. Pols, TIME Magazine, May 4, 2012

Fresh: A refreshing, mature fairy tale with a top-notch ensemble cast. – Claudia Puig, USA Today, May 4, 2012

Rotten: They're stuck with a script, by Ol Parker, that's stuffed with contrivance and cliche, and doggedly repetitive as it tracks its characters' efforts to find new love and adapt to new surroundings. – Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal, May 8, 2012

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews


In a crowded summer full of superheroes, male dancers, and talking teddy bears, it's a rare treat to find a movie like "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel" sitting all alone at the cineplex. Boasting gorgeous scenes against the majestic backdrop of India, light drama mixed with witty humor, and an incredible ensemble cast of renowned British actors, this film is delightfully entertaining in all the right ways. The story follows a group of English retirees who decide to "outsource" their retirement to less expensive and seemingly exotic India. Bolstered with visions of a life of leisure, they arrive at the Marigold Hotel, only to find that the site has become a shell of its former self. Though the new environment is less luxurious than they expected, the elders are forever transformed by their shared experiences, discovering that life and love can begin again when you let go of the past. Although the premise isn't exactly groundbreaking stuff, it's held up surprisingly well mostly thanks to some terrific performances by Judi Dench, Bill Nighy, Maggie Smith, and Tom Wilkinson. Dench, in particular, is a joy to watch on screen. She brings great depth and sincerity to her emotionally wounded character, while also making her genuinely likable as a continually hopeful optimist. Dev Patel, in a charismatic supporting role, makes for another memorable addition to the top-notch cast, but unfortunately, the pointless side story given to his character often feels banal and clichéd beyond belief, and it ends up clashing with the central plot at hand rather than gelling with it. But I digress. Anyway, it's not just the brilliant acting that makes this movie an ultimately compelling and heartfelt experience. John Madden's calm, easy direction is cheerful and simplistic enough to appeal to many viewers younger than the film's target demographic, and the breathtaking visuals of India mesh with Thomas Newman's grand score almost perfectly. With its multi-talented cast and effortless blend of comedy and drama, "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel" is an exuberant, heartwarming picture that works. Sure, the storytelling can get bumpy along the way due to a few predictable plot twists, but other than that, I can't see why this movie isn't worth seeing. Memorable characters, delightful cinematography, and a smart script. For a light summer flick, what more can you ask for?


15 minutes into this movie, I was on my phone looking up how long I had to wait for it to end. Two of the worst hours of my life. I almost died.


This charming movie was Fantastic! I watched it over and over and over again! It is one of my new favorites! I love all of the culture mixed into this feel-good and uplifting story!