~By Tarquin. I went to see Provoked starring Aishwarya Rai. This is one of the worst films I have ever seen. It made for painful viewing - and not because of the sensitive nature of the story, one of an abused woman taking revenge on her bastard-of-a-husband. Horrendous script, terrible directing and, from Rai, a two-dimensional, unconvincing performance. Shame because it could have made an interesting film, especially if it had explored the cultural conflict that can arise between non-resident Indians and imported wives and/or husbands.
It’s worth nothing that Provoked got rubbished by the British press and sank without trace at the UK box office. But in India, where it did very little business, it got rave reviews as a 'crossover' film and Rai’s performance was rated by the Hindustan Times: 'She’s sensitive and emotionally involved with the role of a woman on the edge.' The review added a little bizarrely: 'Many of the white actors are shockingly amateurish though, particularly a prison warden who looks as if she escaped from the chorus line of Diana Ross and the Supremes.'