What You Need To Know:
Despite its slow pace, THE LUNCHBOX is an engaging, poignant movie. However, the story involves themes of adultery. In fact, it seems to excuse the growing affection between the housewife and the widowed accountant because her husband neglects her and is cheating on her. Thus, a Romantic, Non-Christian worldview appears to dominate THE LUNCHBOX.
(RoRo, C, Pa, FR, Acap, S, D, M) Strong Romantic worldview about adultery, plus one major character is a Catholic, but two others are Hindu and Muslim, but specific differences are pretty much left out of the movie though there seems to be a negative attitude toward capitalism; no foul language; no violence; no sex scenes but themes of adultery, including married woman smells another woman’s perfume on her neglectful husband’s shirt and she eventually leaves him with her daughter in tow after she has a correspondence with a widowed man, plus side character lives with his bride-to-be but they get married; no nudity; no alcohol; brief smoking; and, husband neglects wife and another man is a little grumpy and jokes about it at one point when a rumor is mentioned that he once supposedly kicked a cat.
THE LUNCHBOX is a movie from India about the long-distance relationship between a young housewife and a widowed middle-aged accountant taking an early retirement. THE LUNCHBOX is a subtle and insightful but slow-moving drama, with little objectionable content, though the story involves adultery.
The movie tells about Ila, a woman with a young daughter and an uninvolved husband, who may be having an affair. To win back his affection, Ila starts sending him mouth-watering meals to his workplace via Mumbai’s elaborate lunch delivery system. The movie shows right away that Ila’s lunches are going to the wrong person, a widowed middle-aged accountant named Saajan. Meanwhile, Sajaan’s lunches from a local restaurant are going to Ila’s husband.
A comment by her husband about his boring meal makes Ila realize her lunches are going to the wrong person. She puts a note in the next lunch, and Sajaan writes her back, telling her what he did and didn’t like. Soon, the two lonely people are involved in an almost daily correspondence. Ila shares with Sajaan her sadness about her loveless marriage, and Sajaan shares with her his own personal disappointments.
Sajaan is a grumpy man used to being alone since his wife died. The children in his neighborhood annoy him, as does his young, overeager replacement. However, he soon is charmed by and opens up to his replacement, as he does to Ila.
Sajaan shares with Ila his plans to move to the nearby Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan, which Business Week rated as the happiest country in Asia. The question arises as to whether Ila will decide to join him there.
Despite its slow pace, THE LUNCHBOX is an engaging, poignant movie. The woman and her husband are Hindu while the widowed accountant is Catholic and his apprentice is Muslim. In this way, the movie seems to argue in favor of peaceful co-existence between the three religions. This is most evident when the accountant becomes the sole guest of the groom at the wedding of the Muslim apprentice, who grew up an orphan.
On the negative side, however, the story of THE LUNCHBOX also involves adultery. In fact, the movie seems to excuse the growing affection between the housewife and the widowed accountant because her husband neglects her and is cheating on her. Thus, a Romantic, immoral worldview appears to dominate THE LUNCHBOX at the end.