Eat Pray Love is a classic example of what happens to a lot of bestseller-inspired movies. Somewhere in the onscreen transformation the crux is under-communicated and the impact is lost. So we end up watching an unstructured, loose-ended and uninteresting movie.

Eat Pray Love is the story of a woman and her quest for peace, love, her own identity and above all God.

Married yet alone, settled but sad, resolute but fickle-minded, Elizabeth Gilbert (Julia Roberts), a successful writer, finds herself in a mid-life crisis. To find out what future holds for her, she visits a fortune-teller in Bali. Ketut, a timid and old guy, narrates her past and predicts her future. He foretells her two marriages, her loss of everything in life, its comeback and her second visit to Bali to meet him again.

As Liz is back in New York, she finds the predictions to be coming true. She decides to end marriage with her 8-years beau Stephen, who loves her dearly and is not ready to part ways with her. Out of her marriage and a bitter divorce, and into an affair with David (James Franco), a struggling actor, Liz is introduced to Guru Gita – a spiritual leader, by David. Realizing lack of passion and enthusiasm in her second relationship as well, Liz desperately wants to break the monotony of her life from one man to another, and come out of the downward spiral of her life. Intuitively, she decides to go on a purposeless and fancy visit to Italy, India and then Bali.

So here we see a divorced single women, going on a backpack vacation with all her savings, staying in rented accommodations, meeting new people, making friends, learning their culture, teaching them hers and appreciating the beauty of life. She learns the importance to self-nourishment, praying and meditation, and finally finding true love.

In Italy, she learns Italian, adores their cuisine and stuffs herself with food and learns the “art of doing nothing”. She visits places, draws parallels to her life, and struggles to find a word that describes her. In India, she visits Guru Gita’s ashram and tries to find peace and contentment through meditation, selfless devotions and prayers. But no matter how hard she tries, she cannot forget her past, and cannot forgive herself for having broken her relations.

And finally she goes back to Bali to meet Ketut where she eventually finds her balance. She meets a guy and falls for her, but fears to be in a relationship again.

Eat pray love tries to present a philosophical view to life, but gets really dull and uninteresting. The movie continues at the same pace, with no “up and down” moments. The idea of rejuvenation and revival in Liz’s life does not get reflected as it should have been. The insipid thoughts and philosophical content provides distraction from the movie and looks deliberately embedded. To add to all that,  the movie continues for a long two and a half hour, leaving to exasperated and tired.

You might need to be really having a downhill life journey to appreciate the movie. Still better, you can read the book. Eat Pray Love is a “sit watch forget” movie.

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