September 2015 \ Arts & Entertainment \ Desi Marriage
Meet the Patels

By Arun Kumar
  • DESI BRIDE HUNTING: In a scene from the movie, Ravi receives advice on finding a girl from his father

 It all began when Ravi Patel, a 30-year-old Indian-American investment banker turned Hollywood actor, pestered by his parents on a long flight to India to get married, agreed to search for his bride the “desi” way. And Ravi’s sister Geeta, just out of making a war zone documentary about Kashmir, now learning to handle the camera, started filming “half seriously” the “family affair” to find a desi partner for Ravi, who had just broken with his white girlfriend of two years. How what began as a family vacation video eventually turned into a hilarious romantic documentary about arranged marriages is an equally heartbreaking story as the sibling co-directors of “Meet the Patels” narrate it.

“When we got to India, Ravi realised that what he was going through is what so many people have gone through,” the duo said on phone ahead of the September release in New York City, Chicago and Los Angeles. It opens in additional US markets including Washington DC, Boston, New Jersey, Philadelphia, North Carolina, Detroit, and Tampa on September 18.

“He felt so many people were living that story and yet no one had told it properly,” said Geeta who was equally under parental pressure to get married. Many a film and media shows “depict arranged marriages and semi-arranged marriages in Indian culture more like a joke - like parents are weird, that kind of thing”.