The span of an entire romance unfolds in a most unconventional way in the unique — and uniquely captivating — "Hank and Asha." While director James E. Duff, who co-wrote and produced with editor Julia Morrison, has fashioned a love story for the
It all begins when Asha (Mahira Kakkar), an Indian woman studying in Prague, emails aspiring New York filmmaker Hank (Andrew Pastides) a video fan letter after she watches his ballroom dance documentary at a film festival. What follows is a warm and eclectic series of video correspondences, with
Hank's eventual suggestion that he and Asha meet in Paris drives much of their communiqués' snowballing joy and affection. It also propels a sweetly deeper getting-to-know-you phase for the two, which includes Hank and Asha concocting especially cute long-distance "dates" with each other. Their budding relationship is not without its complications, of course. For all its pie-in-the-sky qualities, the movie follows a highly credible path.
With all due respect to the talented filmmakers, the beguiling lead performances are what ultimately make "Hank and Asha" such a watchable little adventure. Like the film itself, Kakkar and Pastides are lively, adorable and thoroughly winning.
"Hank and Asha"
MPAA rating: None
Running time: 1 hour, 13 minutes
Playing: Laemmle's NoNo 7, North Hollywood