The Big Sick

the-big-sick-posterKumail (Kumail Nanjiani) is a struggling stand up comic who meets Emily (Zoe Kazan) at one of his gigs. Romance blossoms but Kumail’s Pakistani heritage and a sudden illness threaten to break them apart.

Kumail’s family want him to marry a Pakistani girl and constantly arrange awkward appointments at family meals for him to meet girls. But Kumail’s fear of telling his family about the white girl he is in love with creates a rift between him and Emily. And her sudden illness results in him having to bond with her parents (Ray Romano and Holly Hunter) in hospital waiting rooms.

Where this film succeeds over so many other comedies right now is that it is a well scripted and well acted comedy with a rounded story. There is little to no ad-libbing on show here and every character feels fully realised. Even one of the many girls who has to awkwardly meet with him gets a moment to explain the difficulties attached.

Based on a true story, this is a remarkable romantic comedy that succeeds in being charming, funny and heartfelt. Written by the real life Kumail and Emily it also manages to accurately reflect cultural differences and the bond people have with family and country (thanks to Kumail’s amazing one man shows). Stay for the initial minute or so of the credits and you will be treated to some real family photos of the couple.

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