The Big Sick

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kevinknapman
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The Big Sick

#1 Post by kevinknapman » Thu Jun 29, 2017 10:10 pm

Silicon Valley's Kumail Nanjiani makes a successful leap from supporting player to film lead with this sweet, emotional and very funny romantic comedy written with his wife Emily V Gordon and partly based on their early relationship.

Starting in fairly traditional rom-com territory with meet-cutes, culture clashes and minor arguments before taking a darker turn when Emily succumbs to a life-threatening infection that leaves her in a medically induced coma (hence the title).

Nanjiani makes for a flawed but engaging protagonist, struggling to reconcile his Pakistani heritage with his love for a white American woman and his desire for a career in stand-up comedy, while he is equally matched by a charming performance from Zoe Kazan as Emily. A minor though unavoidable downside, due to the nature of the true story that inspired the film, is that Kazan is absent for a large part of the story and this absence is clearly felt.
Thankfully that void is filled by an on-form Ray Romano and Holly Hunter who enter as Emily's parents. The awkwardness between them and Nanjiani leads ultimately to an oddly touching relationship that feels almost as important as the central one. It's also the source of much of the best laughs in the film, not least Romano's awkward attempt to discuss 9/11 with Nanjiani which leads to the film's funniest line.
The remaining supporting cast is equally impressive with Anupam Kher and Zenobia Shroff as Nanjiani's religious parents, Four Lions and Utopia's Adeel Akhtar as his brother and Kurt Braunohler, Bo Burnham and Aidy Bryant as fellow struggling comedians.

Nanjiani and Gordon do a fine job juggling the tricky tones of the piece along with director and Wet Hot American Summer writer/creator Michael Showater, though the guiding hand of producer Judd Apatow is apparent too.

A fine film all round, that mixes emotional honesty and crowd pleasing laughs with impressive results. Highly recommended.
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Re: The Big Sick

#2 Post by kevinknapman » Tue Jul 18, 2017 11:49 am

This was Odeon's Screen Unseen last night (despite clues strongly suggesting American Made).
If I'd known it was this beforehand I may not have bothered going as I'd seen it twice already, but glad I did as it really stands up to multiple viewings and still managed to make me laugh.
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Re: The Big Sick

#3 Post by prettyxcool » Wed Jul 19, 2017 12:36 am

A Pakinstani relationship with a white girl, that had not been explored before in this family comedy drama of brown boy meets white girl.

Had not realise that this was based on real life events, how a stand up comic met his wife, until the credits rolled and photos of the real people were shown.

It's well cast, especially the role of Emily by Zoe Kazan, when she ends up in an induced coma, you really miss her, but luckily the parents arrive on the scene in the shape of Ray Romano and Holly Hunter to fill in that gap left by her, a very loveable couple indeed. They were much funnier than the stand up comics, which presumably are supposed to be bad, which worked, they were bad! Kumail’s mother though is classic, endlessy trying to match make her son. There are some funny scenes but it felt a long film, although only just over two hours
Spoiler
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(for the guy to get the girl)!
Although, not knowing the true story, I did predict certain parts of the story, and the ending. 7/10
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Re: The Big Sick

#4 Post by Florence1 » Wed Jul 19, 2017 12:39 am

The film explored the issue of a Pakistani Muslim man not fulfilling his parent's expectations leading to difficulties when he decides to date a white American woman. I enjoyed this rom-om with it's engaging characters particularly Emily (Zoe Kazan) who I thought was very funny and her parents played by Holly Hunter and Ray Romeno. All the cast were really good and there were lots of funny scenarios particularly when various prospective women were being introduced to Kumail at family dinners and the scene in the comedy club with Emily's parents. There were lots of amusing jokes and some laugh out loud moments. A nice light weight entertaining film. 7/10

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Re: The Big Sick

#5 Post by JenBonnar » Wed Jul 19, 2017 9:26 am

I went to see this in a nearly empty cinema as part of odeon screen unseen and there was only about 5 times that anyone actually laughed. There are some witty lines but it's gentle. Also the actual stand up comedy wasn't funny at all. In saying that, I did enjoy watching it although I thought the end could have been fleshed out a little. I can't say more without spoiling it but just what led to the final scene happening?

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Re: The Big Sick

#6 Post by tarantinoed » Wed Jul 19, 2017 9:52 am

I really liked this film. I have to report a bias, however, in having experienced (and still experiencing) cross-cultural differences in my relationship with my husband of 40 years. I thought the film had lots of laugh-out loud moments with it being at the same time quite romantic and sweet. The stand-out performance for me was Emily's father (Ray Romano) who sounded familiar but I couldn't place him in any other films I've seen. Overall a different and highly entertaining film which I would recommend to anyone.

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Re: The Big Sick

#7 Post by tarantinoed » Wed Jul 19, 2017 10:08 am

A bit embarrassed re: my post above and Ray Romano

I'm obviously not very familiar with the hugely successful TV programme "Everybody Loves Raymond"!

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Re: The Big Sick

#8 Post by kevinknapman » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:14 am

tarantinoed wrote: The stand-out performance for me was Emily's father (Ray Romano) who sounded familiar but I couldn't place him in any other films I've seen. .
Possibly sounds familiar as the voice of Manny the mammoth in the Ice Age films.

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Re: The Big Sick

#9 Post by cinecine » Sun Jul 23, 2017 6:53 pm

I was pleasantly surprised by this - it was better than I thought it was going to be. My friend didn't realise it was based on true story until the end

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Re: The Big Sick

#10 Post by alythonian » Sun Jul 23, 2017 7:24 pm

Edinburgh was in the tiny screen 2 at the Cameo which only seats about 40 people, so probably explains the shortage of tickets, especially as they had allocated the majority to members it seemed. So result was with that and ads the film didn't get started until about 11:30.
Really enjoyed the film. I thought it was sweet and funny and really well done. Delighted to see that after nothing but blockbusters for months, or so it feels like!
8/10 FOr the film and a bonus point yo the Cameo fir redeeming themselves by handing out free strawberry ice cream lollies at the end!
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