Much to savor in the Indian comedy 'The Lunchbox'

When a small Indian film stays in Los Angeles theaters for two months and shows no sign of leaving, it's not because critics love it (though they do), but because audiences are enthralled. "The Lunchbox" is that film, a warm and affectionate human comedy that is charming in a delicate and unforced way. Mixing a love of food with potent emotions — think "Babette's Feast," "Eat Drink Man Woman" and "Big Night" — "The Lunchbox" succeeds by leavening its simple story of mistaken identity with wonderful neo-realistic observations of ordinary middle class life in Mumbai and environs. If India had had the wit to nominate this film for the foreign language Oscar, it could well have won.

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