Marjorie Gottlieb Wolfe Marjorie Gottlieb Wolfe
Marjorie Gottlieb Wolfe Marjorie Wolfe
Welcome
by Marjorie Gottlieb Wolfe
“GROIS FARGENIGN” (great pleasure)

What a “grois fargenign” it was to see the movie, “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel,” starring Judi Dench, Bill Nighy, Penelope Wilton, Maggie Smith, Tom Wilkinson, Ronald Pickup, Celia Imrie, and Dev Patel.

Here’s a Yiddish guide to the movie:

“tsuriktsien zikh” (to retire)
“The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel,” produced by John Madden, follows seven British retirees/pensioners who decide to “outsource” their retirement to less expensive and seemingly exotic India.

“alt” and “sheyn” (old and beautiful)
The retirement hotel is run by the “yung” and eager, Sonny (Dev Patel). It is pitched as a place for the elderly and beautiful, and is located in Jaipur, India.

Jaipur (the Pink City) is in the northern part of India. The local transport is auto rickshaws, rickshaws and hired cars.

“fraye” (leisure)
The guests, all of whom have visions of a life with leisure, find the palace a shell of its former self.

“teylin zikh mit” (to share)
Though the hotel/environment is less luxurious than they imagined, the residents are forever transformed by their shared experiences.

“leyn” (life)
“libshaft” (love)
The residents discover that life and love can begin again when you let go of the past.

“shidekh” (arranged marriage)
Sonny’s mother, Lillete Dubey, wants him back in Delhi for an arranged marriage, but Sonny is in love with Sunaina (Tea Desae), who works at Evelyn’s call centre.

“matsliakhdik” (successful)
Sonny has more successful brothers and each own a third of the hotel. They want it knocked down.

“umglik” (disaster)
Sonny’s mother declares the hotel a financial disaster and asks the residents to relocate.

“kompyuter” (computer)
Muriel sneaks access to Sonny’s computer. After examining the accounts, she discovers that the business plan is in fact sound.

“shtele” (job)
Discovering that she cannot even afford to live at the Marigold, Evelyn gets her first job, advising the staff of a marketing call centre how to better interact with their British contacts.

“farhitn” (to pretend)
Madge joins an exclusive club where she fails to pass herself off as Princess Margaret. When she asks to be seated at a table with a rich bachelor, it turns out to be Norman, who is having no success romancing the women there.

Madge has had several unsuccessful marriages and, like Norman, wants fun, adventure and a new man.

“lend” (hip)
Prior to arriving at the Marigold, Muriel was living in a flat alone. She was bitter, and the doctor tells her that the only alternative to a six-month wait for a hip replacement is to be “outsourced” to India. Here, the operation can be scheduled without delay.

“fraydlekhkayt” (kindness)
or “guthartsikayt” Muriel’s doctor takes her to the home of the hotel cleaner, where she is surprised to find the young woman grateful for her kindness. The cleaner simply acknowledges her, and Muriel confides about her life and service managing a family household and raising their children, which ended in an abrupt dismissal.

“mevayesh zayn” (to humiliate)
Jean is attracted to the retired judge. She makes a rare excursion to follow him, but is humiliated when he explains that he is gay.

Graham is reunited with his former lover, who has lived a generally happy life in an arranged marriage of mutual trust and respect. After confiding his contentment to Norman, Graham dies peacefully of a heart attack.

“Epes tsu essen?” (something to eat?)
The meals at the Marigold Hotel are too spicy.

“oylem” (audience)
According to Nicholaus Mills (Special to CNN), “The popularity of ‘Marigond Hotel’ tells us that unlike the critics, today’s audiences don’t find the struggles of the old and middle-aged less worthy of their attention than those of the young. But the charm of the film isn’t confined to its depiction of the elderly trying to make the most of the rest of their lives.”

“aktyor’ (actor)
The Times of India and The Telegraph in England have categorized the movie as little more than entertainment for people in their 50s starring actors in their 70s.

“aktrise” (actress)
Actresses Maggie Smith and Judi Dench are both 77 years of age.

“khasene’ (marriage)
Once a reluctant investor provides the needed funds to keep the Marigold Hotel open, Sonny and Sunaina confront his mother, who concedes to his marriage plans.

“devartn” (to expect)
“der aroyskuk” (expectation)

Evelyn: Nothing here has worked out quite as I expected.
Muriel: Most things don’t. But sometimes what happens instead is the good stuff. (quote from the movie)

“fliplats”(airport)
Jean and Doug prepare to leave the Marigold Hotel and return to England, but a traffic jam stops them from getting to the airport…Jean leaves him (literally and figuratively) to get there in a one-person pedicab.

‘tai” (tea)
Evelyn: Yes. [It’s a builder’s tea]
Evelyn: We dunk biscuits into the tea and letting it soak in there and trying to calculate the exact moment before the biscuit dissolves, when you whip it up into your mouth and enjoy the blissful union of biscuits and tea combined. It’s more relaxing than it sounds. (Quote from movie)

Orderly: My wife is from Mumbai.
Muriel: Well, don’t blame me; you married her! (Quote from movie)

“zok” (sock)
At the end of the movie, Norman can be found washing socks and Carol reads the Kama Sutre in their room.

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Marjorie Wolfe’s favorite line from the movie: “Everything will be all right in the end…if it’s not all right, then it’s not the end.”

Marjorie Wolfe
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