The Mystic Masseur

Watch The Mystic Masseur

  • PG
  • 2001
  • 1 hr 58 min
  • 5.9  (474)
  • 64

The Mystic Masseur is a charming and uplifting comedy-drama that explores the themes of ambition, success, and cultural identity. Directed by Ismail Merchant, the movie is based on the novel of the same name by V.S. Naipaul, and is set in 1950s Trinidad. The story revolves around the character of Ganesh Ramsumair, played by Om Puri. Ganesh is a young man of Indian heritage who dreams of becoming a successful writer and rising above the poverty and limitations of his community. He is also a trained masseur who uses his healing touch to cure various ailments, earning him the nickname of 'mystic masseur'.

Ganesh's ambitions are partly inspired by his mentor and father-in-law, Biswas, played by James Fox. Biswas is a wealthy and influential man who encourages Ganesh to pursue his dreams and find his voice as a writer. But Ganesh's thirst for success soon leads him to become arrogant, self-centered, and dismissive of his roots and culture.

Things change when Ganesh meets Leela, a beautiful and feisty woman played by Aashif Mandvi. Unlike Ganesh, Leela is proud of her Indian identity and traditions, and she challenges Ganesh to re-evaluate his priorities and reconnect with his community. As Ganesh faces various setbacks and obstacles in his writing career, he begins to realize the importance of his cultural heritage and the value of his roots.

The Mystic Masseur is a delightful and heartwarming film that blends humor, drama, and social commentary. It offers a unique insight into the complexities of identity, migration, and cultural assimilation, and celebrates the resilience and creativity of a community that has been historically marginalized and oppressed.

The movie is beautifully shot, with vivid colors and stunning landscapes that evoke the lush, tropical setting of Trinidad. The performances are also top-notch, with Om Puri delivering a nuanced and engaging portrayal of a man torn between his ambition and his roots. James Fox is equally impressive as Biswas, a complex and charismatic figure who represents the conflicts and tensions within the Indian community.

The chemistry between Om Puri and Aasif Mandvi is another highlight of the movie. Their banter and bickering capture the playful and flirtatious spirit of the story, as well as the cultural clash between Ganesh's cosmopolitan sensibility and Leela's traditional values.

Overall, The Mystic Masseur is a must-see movie for anyone interested in the themes of cultural identity, globalization, and the human experience. It is a timeless tale of ambition, love, and self-discovery that resonates with audiences of all ages and backgrounds.

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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 58 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    5.9  (474)
  • Metascore