Learning to Drive

Learning to Drive

DVD - 2016
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A feel-good, coming of (middle) age comedy about a mismatched pair who helps each other overcome life's road blocks.
Publisher: [United States] : Broad Green Pictures, ©2016.
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (90 min.) :,sound, color ;,12 cm
digital, optical, rda
NTSC, rda
video file, DVD video, region 1, rda


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Feb 11, 2020

Directed by Isabel Coixet in 2014 based on a New Yorker article by Katha Pollitt, this American dramedy follows Wendy, a WASPish book critic who takes driving lessons with an East Indian instructor after the breakup of her marriage.
Although I can see a crosscultural bond between the two, the story appears less satisfactory than "Driving Miss Daisy".
Apparently, the writer of the original story might have been inspired by the latter drama.
In any case, I enjoyed the good acting of the major actors.

May 01, 2019

Patricia Clarkson is excellent as a middle-aged, prototypical liberal New Yorker whose bitterly unwanted divorce forces her into many changes, including finally learning how to drive. Her first interactions with her driving instructor, a proud, meditative, and hard-working Sikh (played by Ben Kingsley), are prickly and seem doomed for disaster. Kingsley's character has his own issues with a newly arranged marriage to a woman whose lesser education disappoints him, racism, and keeping his nephew safe from immigration raids. This is a quietly affecting movie about how even the smallest actions can result in moving forward, and how people's paths can cross for just a short time but result in impact. New York City is the background canvas.

Apr 22, 2019

Loved it. Up there with the best movies I've seen this year. Great acting, great script interesting story. Also, upbeat...people of different faiths and cultures learning from each other.

Jan 02, 2019

I too liked this film that starred Ben Kinglsey (Ghandi:1982; Schindler's List: 1993; Iron Man 3: 2013), and Patricia Clarkson (Maze Runner: 2014, 2015 & 2018) as the two main characters that were on their own roads of discovery. One going through a divorce, while the other goes through an arranged Sikh marriage.
The calming manner of the driving instructor goes along way in creating a good message for everyday life.

Jul 28, 2018

Greatly acted, unusual story about two very different people coming to terms with their intimate relationships. Very well done.

Jun 09, 2018

Very enjoyable movie. Wonderful cast - touching story.

JCLMargaretO Jun 05, 2018

A perfect example of how two people appearing to be so completely different can not only find common ground, but also learn from each other.

May 23, 2018

Great story. Great cast. Highly recommended.

Apr 12, 2018

Rated 6/10. I thought Ben Kingsley made the show. He was excellent.

The overall story was okay, but not terrific.

Mar 26, 2018

Well done. Two great actors.
Interesting to see, two different
lives, intersect and intertwine.

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Mar 01, 2016

Thoughts at the light from story:
“Riiight. You see, you are learning! Beef-stew it!”
But what if I get my license and I have one of these episodes of befuddlement when I’m alone at the wheel? Ben often has to remind me not to zone out, as I so frequently do even while I’m telling myself to stay focussed. For example, I’ll be staring at the red light, determined not to let my mind wander, and then I start wondering why red means “stop” and green means “go.” Is there some optic science behind this color scheme? Is it arbitrary? Perhaps it derives from an ancient custom, the way the distance between railroad tracks is derived from the distance between the wheels on Roman carts...
“Kahta,” Ben says gently, “the light has been green for some time now. Please, go!”

Mar 01, 2016

Thoughts at the light from film:
Darwan: Beware of living as well as non-living things...When you see a person ahead of you, Try to guess what they'll do next. Smoothly adjust. The driver's biggest problem is everyone else. You can't always trust people...To behave properly.
Wendy: Ain't that the truth. It is red light. I mean isn't it strange that red has come to mean "stop" and "danger"....It strikes to me that stopping is when you're safe. And going is dangerous.
Darwan: Do not talk, Wendy. When you talk, you don't see. Watch the light.
Darwan: Red is happy, it's...What the bride wears for her wedding in India.
Wendy: Yes, but what does it (car in red color) say about me? I'm a hot little number?... Hussie on board?
Darwin: It says..."Don't fxyk with me."

Feb 29, 2016

Analogy to driving from film:
"Wendy, how do you know if you put in... Enough salt and pepper when you're making a stew?"
"You taste it."
"Right. So what do you do when you lose track of which way the car is pointing...
When you parallel park?
"You taste it?"
"You just let the car move back a tiny bit...And see which way it goes. Taste the direction."
"And then you adjust the seasoning?"
"Right. You adjust a little bit and a little bit."

Feb 29, 2016

Analogy to driving from New Yorker's short story:
“Kahta, how do you know if you’ve put in enough salt and pepper when you are making beef stew?”

“Um, you taste it?”

“Riiight, you taste it. So what do you do if you’ve lost track of which way the car is pointing when you parallel-park?”

“I dunno, Ben. You taste it?”

“You just let the car move back a tiny bit and see which way it goes! You taste the direction! Then you— ”

“Correct the seasonings?”

“Riiight . . . You adjust!”


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May 01, 2019

Sexual Content: Women frankly discuss sex. Consensual sex.

May 01, 2019

Violence: Racism; taunting; attempted fistfight.

May 01, 2019

Coarse Language: Yes.

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