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Cinequest Film Festival

It’s that time of the year when the Cinequest Film Festival runs from Feb. 28-Mar. 11 to delight movie lovers. The festival opens with Mira Nair’s Namesake. Given below are the entries pertaining to India in this year’s festival.

The Namesake

Filmmaker Mira Nair’s brilliant adaptation of Jhumpa Lahiri’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel The Namesake powerfully captures the hold of family traditions and expectations among Indians in America, resulting in an intensely stirring film. Kal Penn makes a dramatic departure from comedy and gives a mature and poignant performance, while Lahiri, herself, makes a wonderful cameo as a family aunt.Director: Mira Nair; Producers: Lydia Dean Pilcher, Mira Nair; Cast: Kal Penn, Tabu, Irfan Khan, Jacinda Barrett, Zuleikha Robinson, Jhumpa Lahiri; 122min. United States; English, Bengali and Hindi with English subtitles.Wednesday Feb. 28, 7 p.m. California Theatre, 345 S. First St., San Jose.

Outsourced (India /USA; 98 min.)

John Jeffcoat’s debut feature is a comedy that eschews stereotypes when a company man, who learns that his entire department is being outsourced, agrees to travel to India. Todd heads the sales department in a Seattle-based company that sells cheap novelty products. A fish out of water in India, he is met with young workers mystified as to why anyone would want the useless products his company sells, much less how to sell them. Rescue comes in the form of Asha, who quickly assumes the role of showing Todd that he must understand the people and their culture before he can inspire them. Todd and Asha quickly become attracted to each other—although both know that such a relationship would be a rather complicated one indeed. Outsourcing is a familiar phenomenon, and this film is a crowd-pleasing comedy that is as relevant as it is genuine. Saturday March 3, 8 p.m. (CAL); Sunday March 4, 6:30 p.m. (CAL); Thursday March 8, 7 p.m. (C12).

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