By Matt Zoller Seitz
Outsourced, in which a Seattle call center manager named Todd (Josh Hamilton) is fired and then dispatched to India as a consultant to train his own replacement, is a wonderful surprise. At first it threatens to be just another fish-out-of-water story. The film's director, John Jeffcoat, and his co-writer, George Wing, hit expected marks, from the moment when a street urchin swipes the hero's cellphone to the bit where Todd learns why Indians don't eat with their left hand to the scene where Todd realizes that his sharpest employee, an outspoken young woman named Asha (Ayesha Dharker), is gorgeous and has a crush on him. Gratifyingly, though, the filmmakers treat Todd's story as a springboard for a smart look at the effect of cultural difference on work, friendship and love, and the global economy's impact on national and personal identity.
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