Review: The indie rom-com ‘7 Days’ proves a resourceful, entertaining romp

A young man and a young woman on a couch in the movie “7 Days.”
Karan Soni and Geraldine Viswanathan in the movie “7 Days.”

The warm and charming romcom “7 Days,” which takes place at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic (and was shot in September 2020), is an example of indie filmmaking at its most resourceful. It’s a cleverly executed two-hander set mainly inside a Thermal, Calif., home (a rather cluttered and grimy one at that) with all but its engaging two leads seen only on video clips and computer screens or heard via speakerphone. Sometimes you’ve just gotta make a movie.

Ravi (Karan Soni) and Rita (Geraldine Viswanathan) are a pair of twentysomething singles brought together by their mothers through an Indian marriage website. Lab researcher Ravi is repressed and neurotic but deeply sincere with traditional goals, while aspiring artist Rita is a modern-thinking (and acting) slacker who eats meat, drinks alcohol, has a married lover and fibs to her devoted mom, who’s footing the bill for her rental digs.

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In just-go-with-it rom-com fashion, Ravi and Rita become stuck together in her house after an awkward first date leads to the quick realization that they have zero chance of marrying each other — much less getting along while sheltering in place. Oil, meet water; you know the drill.

Though the tropes of the genre dictate that a love connection is likely in store, it’s how that foregone conclusion is reached that provides the enjoyment value in any romcom worth its salt — and “7 Days” nicely fills the bill.

The script by Soni and director Roshan Sethi (he co-created the hit TV series “The Resident” and co-wrote the upcoming feature “Call Jane”) deftly mines and melds such topics as early pandemic pandemonium, Indian traditions, love, loneliness, soul mates, family bonds, being true to oneself and much more in one funny, insightful package. And, while the film may send up several aspects of Indian culture, it does so with far more good nature than snark.


The nerdy-cute Soni and adorably deadpan Viswanathan, both regulars on the TBS comedy series “Miracle Workers,” are terrific together as they navigate their polar differences, slowly open up and trust each other, and find common ground in several amusing, unpredictable ways — and a few more serious ones.

Also fun is a “When Harry Met Sally”-style framing device featuring interviews with actual long-term Indian couples looking back on their arranged relationships.

Despite occasional dips in energy that usually coincide with the root-worthy characters’ own flailing moments, “7 Days” remains a buoyant and involving jaunt.

‘7 Days’

Not rated

Running time: 1 hour, 26 minutes

Playing: Starts March 25, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, downtown Los Angeles; Universal Cinema AMC, Universal City; AMC Orange; AMC Dine-in Ontario Mills