It is typical of the media to portray the monsoon either as a reason to celebrate or as a cause for worry. The reality, however, is that life in India is accustomed to taking the monsoon in its stride. This is the message of the film, Monsoon Wedding.

The story is about the arranged marriage of Aditi (Vasundhara Das) with a groom from the U. S. Her parents Lalit (Naseeruddin Shah) and Pimmi (Lillette Dubey) are busy organizing the celebrations in their Delhi house. Family members, close and distant, young and old, get assembled for the wedding, a typical north Indian affair. But this 2001 Mira Nair film is unlike any other wedding films like Hum Aapke Hain Kaun or Dilwale Dulhaniyan Le Jayenge. The story has many twists and surprises and a subplot that develops in parallel. There are many tender scenes and emotional dialogues, mostly Naseeruddin Shah’s, that keep the viewers involved till the end.

At the beginning of the film we hear a song in the background that says, ‘Aaj mausam bada beiman..’ setting the scene for the untrustworthy monsoon. This song is borrowed from an old film, Loafer, and sung by Mohd. Rafi, but there is another rain song ‘Tauba tauba’ which is original.

The monsoon is shown in its fury when Aditi goes on an early morning escapade with her TV producer boy-friend, as ‘Aap jaane ki zid na karo’ plays in the background. The adventure ends up in an encounter with the police with the boyfriend getting soaked in the downpour.

Finally things are all sorted out, but just as the baraat or the groom’s family arrives on the scene, the skies open out, the groom on horseback has to be given an umbrella and the band plays in the rain. But the monsoon fails to dampen the spirits and everyone joins in a seemingly never-ending rain dance.

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