Liberated, Westernized daughters versus their traditional, ethnic mothers -- it's the trendiest genre in crowd-pleasing independent cinema. Pick an ethnic minority, embrace its clichés and use them for punchlines, then pit your female heroine (attractive, not gorgeous, with a realistic body type) in a position where she's torn between family and future.

"My Big Fat Greek Wedding" milked the formula for $250 million. "Real Women Have Curves" was a modest hit, combining body-image themes with a story about a second-generation Los Angeles Latina who wanted to go to college instead of working in her sister's dress factory -- much to the chagrin of her old-fashioned mother.

Now comes the English import "Bend It Like Beckham," in which the soccer-fanatic daughter of Sikh immigrants pursues her sporty dreams behind the backs of her disapproving parents and -- to quote from the stock-language press kit -- "has to choose between tradition and following her heart."

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