'Meet the Patels' tells true story of dating between cultures

As Ravi Patel closes in on 30, his Indian-American family ups the pressure to find a wife. This is his true story.
Ravi Patel, left, is the reluctant subject of a non-fiction rom-com directed by his sister, Geeta Patel. (MeetThePatelsFilm.com)

Actor Ravi Patel and director Geeta Patel are the brother and sister team behind Meet The Patelsa comedic documentary about Ravi's quest to find a wife.

Their Indian-American parents, who think he's never had a girlfriend, convince their adult son to let them intervene. Together, they seek out a partner not only from the same cultural background, but with the same last name.

The result? An extensive tour through the "Patel match-making system", which includes Patel conventions and "biodata", or ultra-modern marriage résumés.

The film also highlights the differences between the North American and Indian understandings of love, marriage, and family — as well as the different aims and outcomes of relationships in those two societies.

And while they don't claim to represent every Indian family's experience in the film, Geeta says, "Everyone in our extended family did this system ... and they are literally the healthiest, happiest relationships we know.  And you have to think a minute, you know: Who cares how you get there? We all want to be happy, we all want great relationships."

WEB EXTRA | Watch the trailer for Meet the Patels below. 

q: Has your family ever inserted themselves into your romantic life? Was there a cultural gap to bridge on top of the turbulent dating landscape? Tell us your stories in the comments below or email q@cbc.ca


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