This sequel for me was on par with the first one, though I have to admit to having a good old chuckle at quite a few scenes, mostly during Sonny's (Dev Patel) excellent delivery of his lines. Slightly annoying, sometimes funny and infinitely endearing. The silver-haired team is back and though there was not much of a story, it was pleasant just living the moment of the scenes and rolling and rocking with the punchlines.
Sonny is after an expansion of his hotel but the potential investors want to send out an inspector first to assess the situation. When a new tenant arrives, Sonny is positive it's the inspector in the guise of a writer and goes all out to pamper him. Meanwhile his wedding is looming but he doesn't have much time to think of anything else but his dream for another hotel, much to the annoyance of his fiance.
Some of the seniors have found gainful employment and even learnt some of the language, if only in parrot fashion to get them what they want.
There are indecisions and decisions to be made, unexpected blossoming of attraction, perhaps love, jealousy and of course the usual roll call to make sure everyone is accounted for. All this amidst chaos that ends in a Bollywood dance number.
Judy Dench and Maggie Smith deliver performances akin to veterans of the big screen, which they are. The rest of the cast are polished and comfortable in what is an easy role they have to play. Celia Imrie plays the minx really well and with class even though she really is being quite promiscuous. It looked promising to see Richard Gere as the newcomer, but now I wonder why he was there at all. His role was pretty forgettable and his ardour doesn't quite work for me. A bit of overkill without the chemistry.
The crumbling Marigold Hotel that we've spent time in as an audience amongst the growing affection between locals and hotel residents makes me almost feel like it does exist. I could just take a step out the door and I'd be there in another world enjoying the sights and smells of colourful India. Awaking to the sounds of my name being called out by Dev Patel in the morning. It's not a fantastic movie, nor the worst. It's just comfortable and familiar. I give it a 6 out of 10.