The Namesake, director Mira Nair's adaptation of the book by Jhumpa Lahiri, is a deeply felt look at the ties of family and birthplace, the loneliness of living far from your home, and the connections that hold everything together, sometimes in ways we don't appreciate until much later. Nair examines these issues by focusing her lens on two generations of the Ganguli family: husband Ashoke (Irrfan Khan) and wife Ashima (Tabu), a Bengali couple who immigrated to New York from India, and their children, Gogol and Sonia, who were born and raised in America.
Ashima moves halfway around the world to live with her new husband, Ashoke, following an arranged marriage. Leaving behind the warm, familiar climate of Calcutta, Ashima must adjust to life in New York in winter. Lonely, cold and depressed, Ashima nonetheless does her best to make her way in her new home, as she learns to love her new husband. Before long two children, son Gogol (Kal Penn) and daughter Sonia (Sahira Nair) have expanded their little family and bound them to their new country, and the Gangulis move to a house in the 'burbs in Nyack.