A 5-year-old Indian boy and his brother are separated in the teeming streets of Calcutta, hundreds of miles from home. He aligns himself with street people, narrowly dodges sexual imprisonment, and is eventually adopted by an Australian family whose matriarch, Sue Brierley (Nicole Kidman), thinks it a good idea that Saroo (Dev Patel) derive the benefits of a brother. But while Saroo is pretty much the perfect son, the adopted Mantosh (Divian Ladwa) is the other half of the papadam. Into his twenties before we know it, Saroo — prompted by his girlfriend Lucy (Rooney Mara) — decides he wants to meet his real mama and sets out to do just that. Oddly enough, there is no pushback from Sue, and so director Garth Davis misses a shot at jacking up the drama. On the other hand, he may have chosen to remain faithful to Saroo Briereley’s book, “A Long Way Home.” If you’re susceptible to tearjerkers, you would do well to warn your companions that you may get carried out of the theater, wailing uncontrollably. The rest of us will enjoy a good story.

– Mal Karman

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