It may be rather long for a romantic comedy, but this film has such a strikingly original script that it grabs hold and never lets go. Based on the real-life story of actor-writer Kumail Nanjiani (Silicon Valley) and his cowriter wife Emily Gordon, the movie is packed with engaging characters who each take their own journey through a series of unexpected events. In other words, it's a clever screenplay that's beautifully played and often very, very funny.
Playing an only slightly fictionalised version of himself, Kumail is a stand-up comic in Chicago when he meets Emily (Zoe Kazan), who heckles him at one of his gigs. Their banter quickly turns to flirtation and then love. But there's a hitch in the fact that Kumail's parents (Anupan Kher and Zenobia Sfiroff) expect him to marry a nice Pakistani Muslim girl, and he doesn't want to let them down. He's even reluctant to reveal Emily to his slightly more open-minded brother (Adeel Akhtar). This strains the burgeoning romance, which takes a turn when Emily is put into an induced coma in hospital. It also forces Kumail to get to know Emily's parents (Holly Hunter and Ray Romano), who turn up to sit with him as they wait for her condition to improve.
It's rare for a rom-com to take such a serious turn, and this film plays the situation with a proper sense of dramatic tension while maintaining an awkwardly edgy comical sensibility. All of this allows characters to come to vivid life, each with his or her own big issues that need to be dealt with as they interact with other people. The network of relationships reflect real life better than most movies, exploring Kumail's professional life and his camaraderie with his fellow comics as well as the layered family bonds and his developing connection with Emily and her parents. It's also a refreshingly realistic depiction of multi-cultural society.
Continue reading: The Big Sick Review
When Kumail and Emily meet, they're instantly drawn toward one another. Emily is a student and Kumail is an aspiring comedian who also works part time as an Uber driver to make money. After spending the night together, Emily awakes and decides to make an early exist only to ring an Uber and for Kumail to, obviously, be the nearest driver.
As the pair become more and more endeared to one another they spend more time together and things look like they could get more serious but for Kumail, things aren't quiet as straight forward boy meets girl, boy and girl fall in love and marry. Being Muslim from a Pakistani background, Kumail's parents expect him to have an arranged marriage and as he grows older his mother becomes more and more obsessed with finding the right person to share his life with.
Kumail can no longer keep his new Beau secret and confides in his brother that he's been dating a white girl and his reaction isn't exactly as positive as he might've hoped. When Emily finds out about the plans for Kumail's arranged marriage, the pair have a talk and, even though in their heart of hearts neither want to, they break their relationship up.
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When the body of Mahesh Jadhav, the chief constable of the Mumbai Police, is found alongside 100 million rupees, the citizens of the city are immediately suspicious. It's clear that there's been some corrupt operation occuring within the higher authorities, but who can they turn to for help to solve the matter? Well, there is one man. Bajirao Singham is a Maratha willing to save the city from spiralling into a world of crime and violence. Well built and with formidable fighting skills, Singham will stop at nothing to bring justice to the city and uncover the truth behind Mumbai's police. It would seem Jadhav's partner Guruji is unbeknownst as to the alleged goings on in his force - but the city people aren't so sure. Singham, however, needs to work out who he can trust for himself.
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Asha is a young Indian woman living in London, whose family are deeply proud of their Punjabi culture. She has a handsome boyfriend named Aman who is desperate to marry her, but first he must meet her family and earn their respect before he has any hope of receiving their blessing. Initially getting gently teased by Asha's mother for not being from the Punjab region of India, the playful banter soon turns to abuse when Asha admits that Aman is actually from Pakistan. He wants to leave a good impression on the family (who have their own hidden problems), but with such aggressively prejudice attitudes from his would-be in-laws, will he manage to cope with the difficult situation and earn their trust? Or will his marriage proposal to Asha be ultimately refused?
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Writer-director David O. Russell's out-of-control filmmaking style is perfectly suited to a romantic-comedy involving mental illness, and he infuses the film with a sparky unpredictability that's echoed in the perfectly graded performances of the entire cast. Cleverly, even though most of the characters are clinically unhinged, they're all likeable and easy to identify with.
Cooper stars as Pat, who has spent eight months in a mental hospital before his mother (Weaver) comes to take him home early. His dad (De Niro) isn't so sure it's a good idea, but everyone's happy to have him home. And since he finally accepts that he's bipolar, Pat is ready to get on with life. But it's not so easy. He's prevented from reuniting with his wife because of a restraining order, so he visits mutual friends (Stiles and Ortiz) instead. And they set him up with Tiffany (Lawrence), who's psychologically damaged in her own way. Recognising similar needs, they agree to help each other.
Yes, the film has a clear rom-com premise, but the characters are so unpredictable that we are never quite sure what they'll say or do next. And it's not like Pat and Tiffany are the only unstable people here: they're just the only ones with official diagnoses. All of which gives the actors almost too much colourful material to work with. Cooper is a likeable, charming presence at the centre, eliciting our sympathy even when he does something stupid. And Lawrence delivers a full-on performance that often takes our breath away with its clever layering.
Continue reading: Silver Linings Playbook Review
Pat Solitano has just come out of a mental institution where he was sent after a violent altercation with his wife's secret lover. Now he has lost his house, his job as a teacher, and his marriage is unsalvageable. He moves back in with his parents in order to build himself a life and make things up with his wife, but putting the past behind him isn't as easy as he'd hoped. He meets a woman called Tiffany who happens to be in a similar situation; she has also lost her job and her husband has passed away. The pair begin to get close as Tiffany promises to help him get back with his wife in return for him doing her a big favour. Both are still determinedly attached to their former spouses but their feelings betray them as their bond grows closer.
'Silver Linings Playbook' has been adapted from the comedy drama novel of the same name by Matthew Quick and directed and written by David O. Russell ('Three Kings', 'I Heart Huckabees', 'The Fighter'). It's a wonderful story of how the brightest things can come out of the darkest situations and will hit the UK on November 21st 2012.
Director: David O. Russell
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After years of marriage, Alfie and Helena are getting divorced, this is mainly due to Alfie's midlife crisis and lust for a much younger woman called Charmaine. Whilst Helena seeks guidance from a fortune teller her daughter is also facing troubles of her own. Sally works in an art gallery work whilst her husband stays at home hoping to write a novel that repeats the success of his first.
The premise is similar to Austen's Pride and Prejudice. Here the setting is moved to India, where the not-so-wealthy (but still rich enough to hire servants) Bakshi family resides in a less-than-touristy district. Mrs. Bakshi (Nadira Babbar) is desperate to marry off her daughters. They include Jaya (Namrata Shirodkar), who has eyes for lawyer Balraj (Lost's Naveen Andrews), and Lalita (Aishwarya Rai) who is interested in Balraj's American friend Will Darcy (Martin Henderson), until she actually bothers to talk to him.
Continue reading: Bride & Prejudice Review
If nothing else, "Bride and Prejudice" proves that the silly, ingenuous charm of Bollywood musicals becomes tedious andeven downright dumb in English.
A cross-cultural adaptation of Jane Austen's "Pride and Prejudice" set in modern-day Bombay, London and Los Angeles, thisis a trite, flimsy, groundless romance of shallow character stereotypes, ethnic hypocrisy, and horrible songs. But it does have one saving gracein talented, stunningly beautiful Indian superstar Aishwarya Rai.
As Lalita, the most independent and worldly of five sisterswhose largely traditional parents have begun trying to marry them off,Rai has a radiant screen presence as she stands in for Austen's heroineElizabeth Bennet. But she doesn't have much to work with except personalitycontradictions that betray a one-dimensional script -- and a suitor whois nothing short of insufferable, played by an actor without the chopsto reveal his unsuspected depth.
Continue reading: Bride & Prejudice Review
It may be rather long for a romantic comedy, but this film has such a...
When Kumail and Emily meet, they're instantly drawn toward one another. Emily is a student...
When the body of Mahesh Jadhav, the chief constable of the Mumbai Police, is found...
Asha is a young Indian woman living in London, whose family are deeply proud of...
Writer-director David O. Russell's out-of-control filmmaking style is perfectly suited to a romantic-comedy involving mental...
Pat Solitano has just come out of a mental institution where he was sent after...
After years of marriage, Alfie and Helena are getting divorced, this is mainly due to...
What do you get when you mix a Bollywood musical with a Jane Austen classic?...