The Big Sick Review
Director: Michael Showalter
I remember watching this trailer unexpectedly and immediately added it to my watchlist because it's an issue I often think about. Trying to have and maintain a relationship with conflicting cultural and religious differences. I believe it to be a common taboo among our multicultural societies across the world, especially during this era where some people are born from one strict generation and want to live in a more liberal generation.
It's bound to happen in this day and age, and it's something I've had a little experience with myself. The heart wants what it wants and it ignores all the cultural restrictions and it's really only ourselves that allows these differences to halt any loving development. Now I'm not saying these traditions are wholly wrong as I can appreciate it works for some people. But it is a one of those family traditions that enforces a way of life onto someone else that might not want to adhere to. This being one perfect example, as I can imagine many couples, possibly secret, face the same hard and often heartbreaking tribulations.
Kumail and Emily are just one of these couples that go through the motions of falling into an intercultural relationship. And what makes it all the more touching, honest and real is that it's base on a true story; the true story of Kumail himself, the Pakistani born comedian who has graced the big screen recently in Central Intelligence, Fist Fight and Mike & Dave Need Wedding Dates.
Now, Kumail's acting style really isn't going to win everyone over with some possibly saying he's wooden. But it's probably a role he didn't really need to act for, drawing from his very own experience. Getting into character must be a strict case of "be yourself". Kazan is brilliant, who does have to play someone else, Kumail's real life wife, Emily who does actually cameo in the film. Hunter and Romano are equally brilliant too.
Now it's not an all out comedy, but it does have it's awkward laugh out loud moments. In fact, to label it a comedy feels wrong having seen it. I'm assuming they haven't dressed it up or added content for dramatic effect, so instead tell a heartfelt true story that has its comical moments that some might be able to relate to. It's real life after all and sheds light on some of relationship things some of us might be too embarrassed to talk about.
Showalter really does bring his story to life and it should be no surprise that Judd Apatow is sitting in the producer's chair. Kumail and the real life Emily must be incredibly proud, and they should be, regardless whether critics and viewers like it or not for whatever reason. It's a delightful, honest and touching story of their getting-together. Insightful and inspiring. Definitely one of my favourite dramas of the year so far.
Running Time: 9
The Cast: 9
Job Description: 8
The Extra Bonus Point: 5 for being the true story of the star himself, giving me a newfound respect for Kumail.