Hotel Mumbai is brutal, unflinching and stays with you for some time

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DEV PATEL stars in this emotional portrayal of the Mumbai terrorist attack and siege of the Taj Mahal hotel.

This well-directed movie is a confident debut from Anthony Maras but a tough watch at times.

Dev Patel stars in Hotel Mumbai about the terrorist attack and siege of the Taj Mahal hotel

It is a horrible sequence, compounded by the knowledge that the real events were probably even worse.

Shown through the eyes of Dev’s character, Arjun – a waiter at the hotel – it unfolds like a traditional disaster movie, before unfurling into an exploration of character, bravery and what was an 80-hour nightmare leaving at least 31 people dead.

For all its great moments it has tinkered with reality. A swathe of the characters – such as Jason Isaacs’ seedy Russian oligarch Vasili or Armie Hammer’s privileged David – are “amalgamations” of real people.

I understand the necessity for this, but it pulls me out – I wondered how much has been unnecessarily fictionalised.


It will inevitably draw criticism. Is it exploiting events that, having happened only in 2008, still feel too raw?

I say no. While the film is brutal and unflinching, we should see these cowardly events in the unfiltered horror with which they occurred.

This is a bold, decent film that will, quite rightly, stay with you for some time.


Hotel Mumbai (15) 123mins

★★★☆☆


 

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