Saturday Movies: Shades of Ray (2008)

Shades of Ray depicts an emerging culture quite well, and probably because Jaffar Mahmood is bringing the movie to screen. While many might not have heard of this romantic comedy, it is worth watch and even makes a good comedy for both male and females. It seems like the genre is reemerging from the rubble of the cheesy films it got lost in to prove it can have legitimate stories to share with people. It also is very age appropriate in showing how different generations interact with one another.

Summary: Ray is American born, but from half Pakistani descent. He’s always believed that the culture his dad was imposing on him was completely not right for him, and even bypassed him arranging for him to meet a woman in order to meet women in a more modern dating way. . When Ray’s girlfriend, Noel, gives him no answer to his proposal, his father insist further upon an arranged meeting with a girl he has in mind, Sana. Ray gives in to please his father, but finds that Sana is actually really compatible with him. His dad is now living with him after being thrown out of the house, and pressuring him more than ever. Now he is put in a tough spot because he relates more to his own culture more than he thought, and is unsure that Noel is the one he is to be with.

Acting: The acting is very well done in this movie, and despite never having heard of any of the actors, except Zachary Levi I thought they were quite believable and funny. Zachary Levi seems to have not have found is stride since Chuck ending, but you would think with his performance in such movies like Shades of Ray he would be more out there. He is seems like most guys you meet. He is just normal. Sarah Shari is Sana and she is also likable. She isn’t too in your face with her character, but you can see why Ray might fall for her. Brian George is the father, Javaid, and he is the biggest comedic relief of the movie with his part. There is also Bonnie Summerville as Noel, and I think the she is the weakest part. You would think you would feel something toward her, but she is just annoying, and you don’t know why Ray is into her.

Filming: The filming is simple considering the movie is really low budget. What I did like is that the color really makes up for it. It seems like the director was looking for ways to make the movie memorable otherwise, and the easiest way to do that is color. Everything from the clothes to the setting depict a lot of life, which adds to the movie, and moves with the tone of the moods very well.

Plot: I liked the plot, and I thought it was very sweet. You feel the pain of being rejected, and you feel the tough choices ahead for the characters as well. Ray has that natural charm that makes you see why both of these ladies are interested in him. It also shows the progression of relationships over time in comparison to the newer ones. The reason the dad thinks it would be a great idea to pursue a more traditional route because he thinks he wouldn’t be kicked out of his house had he chose a woman in an arranged marriage. It’s very sweet how everything comes back around to work together and show us how relationships from all different backgrounds can work. I like how the older couples are not arranged relationships and the newer one is one that is being introduced to being arranged.

Shades of Ray is one that you might want to consider watching if you need a romantic comedy, and a break from the ones that are out there. It deals with a spectrum of issues like heartache, love, choices, and healing that may be overlooked by others. It also explains why cultures might still do this, and that they don’t do it in the most archaic way we think of it in.

Rating 9 of 10.

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