The Big Sick brings you a dose of warmth: Review by Rashid Irani

Updated on Jul 01, 2017 09:03 AM IST
Heartwarming, compassionate and wholly human, the movie is all that a poignant romantic comedy should be
While Pakistani-born stand-up comedian Kumail Nanjiani plays himself, Zoe Kazan portrays the fictionalised version of his spouse in the movie.
While Pakistani-born stand-up comedian Kumail Nanjiani plays himself, Zoe Kazan portrays the fictionalised version of his spouse in the movie.
Hindustan Times | ByRashid Irani

THE BIG SICK

Direction: Michael Showalter

Actors: Kumail Nanjiani, Zoe Kazan

Rating: 4 / 5

There’s nothing quite like a witty and poignant romantic comedy. Based on their real-life love story, The Big Sick is incisively scripted by Pakistani-born stand-up comedian Kumail Nanjiani in collaboration with his American producer wife Emily V. Gordon.

While Nanjiani plays himself, Zoe Kazan portrays the fictionalised version of his spouse.

Director Michael Showalter (Hello, My Name Is Doris) draws us into the couple’s complex lives from the get-go. The comedic first half builds upon a standard-issue meet-cute situation. As their relationship evolves, it’s clear the two seem to be made for each other.

Director Michael Showalter draws us into the couple’s complex lives from the get-go. As their relationship evolves, it’s clear the two seem to be made for each other. (Photo by Nicole Rivelli)
Director Michael Showalter draws us into the couple’s complex lives from the get-go. As their relationship evolves, it’s clear the two seem to be made for each other. (Photo by Nicole Rivelli)

But as with most romances, the course of true love is strewn with obstacles. Nanjiani keeps his affair with the white girl a secret from his orthodox parents (Zenobia Shroff-Anupam Kher), who are determined to get him married to a Muslim woman.

Another snag occurs when Emily slips into a medically-induced coma after being diagnosed with a life-threatening ailment. Nanjiani keeps vigil at her hospital bedside despite the polite objections of her parents (Holly Hunter-Ray Romano). The subsequent interactions between him and the older couple are priceless.

Issues of the immigrant experience, clash of cultures and racism are confronted with non-judgmental candour. The stellar ensemble makes you care about the emotional highs and lows of characters.

Heartwarming, compassionate and wholly human, The Big Sick is highly recommended.

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