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THE NAMESAKE

"A Story of Secular Americanization"

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What You Need To Know:

THE NAMESAKE is an interesting look at the Americanization of two generations of a family that moved from India to the United States. The major focus of the movie is on the son born in New York and named Gogol after a Russian author. He grows up under the influence of Hollywood and the public schools and comes out as a vulgar, self-centered, pot-smoking college student embarrassed by his given name. He changes his name and travels in the broader secular American society while his parents maintain friendships with fellow Indian immigrants who keep many of their native traditions.

The movie shows that secular Americanization, while providing freedom in the pursuit of careers and happiness, fails to produce happiness. MOVIEGUIDE® recommends extreme caution in viewing THE NAMESAKE because, while it is an excellent study of the trials and tribulations of an Indian family trying to adjust to a new culture and clearly shows some of the wages of sin, it fails to light the path to true freedom and it contains some bad language, drug and alcohol use, sex outside of marriage and one scene of full rear female nudity.

Content:

(PaPa, B, L, SS, NN, A, DD, M) Strong pagan worldview about a young man adapting a pagan American lifestyle while continuing to show some respect for his Hindu customs of his parents with some light moral elements showing the consequence of sin; five obscenities and no profanities; no violence; two scenes of sex outside of marriage, not explicit; one scene of rear female nudity; some alcohol use; smoking and marijuana use; and, some scenes of Hindu traditions include scattering human ashes in Ganges River.

More Detail:

THE NAMESAKE is an interesting look at two generations of a family that moved from India to the United States. It shows the Americanization of the parents and children in a not too flattering light. The major focus of the movie is on the son (Kal Penn) born in New York and named Gogol after the Russian author. He grows up under the influence of Hollywood and the public schools and comes out as a vulgar, self-centered, pot-smoking college student embarrassed by his given name. He changes his name and travels in the broader secular American society while his parents maintain close friendships with fellow Indian immigrants who keep many of their native traditions.

Gogol, now Nick, falls in love with an American girl named Maxine (Jacinda Barrett) and the two exchange visits with each other’s parents. Gogol advises Maxine on how to avoid offending his family and their friends. She slips up some but survives. When Gogol’s father dies suddenly, he is devastated and for a time tries to be more of a traditional Hindu. He even breaks up with Maxine and marries a Hindu girl named Moushumi (Zuleikha Robinson), but she turns out to be more French than Hindu and leaves Gogol for a former boyfriend from France. Both Gogol and Moushumi had fornicated with others before marriage.

The movie shows clearly that secular Americanization, while providing freedom in the pursuit of careers and happiness, fails to produce happiness. The sexual freedom Gogol and his wife took before marriage wound up destroying it. Gogol is left in the end named after a quest for freedom but battered by the results of sinful choices. Without finding the path to freedom from sin, Gogol appears headed for more unhappy consequences. Like Gogol, you can make friends, share some drugs and drink, have some sex, share some dirty jokes, and wind up miserable. The Bible says wide is the path that leads to destruction.

MOVIEGUIDE® recommends extreme caution in viewing THE NAMESAKE because, while it is an excellent study of the trials and tribulations of an Indian family trying to adjust to a new culture and clearly shows some of the wages of sin, it fails to light the path to true freedom and contains some foul language, drug and alcohol use, sex outside of marriage, and brief nudity.

4000+ Faith Based Articles and Movie Reviews – Will you Support Us?

Our small team works tirelessly to provide resources to protect families from harmful media, reviewing 415 movies/shows and writing 3,626 uplifting articles this year. We believe that the gospel can transform entertainment. That’s why we emphasize positive and faith-filled articles and entertainment news, and release hundreds of Christian movie reviews to the public, for free. No paywalls, just trusted, biblically sound content to bless you and your family. Online, Movieguide is the closest thing to a biblical entertainment expert at your fingertips. As a reader-funded operation, we welcome any and all contributions – so if you can, please give something. It won’t take more than 52 seconds (we timed it for you). Thank you.

Movieguide® is a 501c3 and all donations are tax deductible.


4000+ Faith Based Articles and Movie Reviews – Will you Support Us?

Our small team works tirelessly to provide resources to protect families from harmful media, reviewing 415 movies/shows and writing 3,626 uplifting articles this year. We believe that the gospel can transform entertainment. That’s why we emphasize positive and faith-filled articles and entertainment news, and release hundreds of Christian movie reviews to the public, for free. No paywalls, just trusted, biblically sound content to bless you and your family. Online, Movieguide is the closest thing to a biblical entertainment expert at your fingertips. As a reader-funded operation, we welcome any and all contributions – so if you can, please give something. It won’t take more than 52 seconds (we timed it for you). Thank you.

Movieguide® is a 501c3 and all donations are tax deductible.