An enjoyable romantic comedy, The Big Sick is a flick from the Judd Apatow stable that really shines because of its excellent cast. It has a lot of interesting elements that come together to form a very entertaining whole and you can’t help but enjoy spending time with characters on screen.
Michael Showalter’s film sees Kumail Nanjiani and Zoe Kazan play Kumail and Emily, two star-crossed lovers divided by culture. He’s a muslim (and stand-up comic) whose family wants to set him up in an arranged marriage with a Pakistani wife and she’s an all American girl with an eye on her education. They throw caution to the wind, but the road to true love is a rough one, and it’s made even more rocky when Kazan’s character ends up in a medically induced coma.
Kumail Nanjiani wrote the film with his wife, Emily Gordon and it’s based on the early days of their own relationship. It’s a culture clash comedy, with sparkly character moments that add fizz. Nanjiani is good at playing a heightened version of himself, but it’s Zoe Kazan who really impresses here. The film takes a hit when she’s sidelined, but Holly Hunter and Ray Romano (a good screen presence) help pick up the slack as her parents. The plot is as straight forward as you’d expect but things get a little unfocused because of the myriad of supporting characters which include Nanjiani’s fellow stand-up friends and family. Nanjiani is the focal point here and we get to learn more about his many quirks in detail. We know about his career as an Uber driver, his X-Files fascination and love of old B-movies, but we don’t get too much information on Kazan’s Emily. Even when we learn about a past marriage, it feels rushed, like it was dropped into the script to give her another dimension. I wanted to learn more about her and see more interaction with Hunter and Romano.
One of the indie hits of 2017, it’s easy to see why it went down well with audiences. The cast do all the heavy lifting but, The Big Sick really works with Zoe Kazan is on screen.
The Big Sick comes with a plethora of interesting extras. You get a commentary from Kumail Nanjiani, Emily Gordon, director Michael Showalter and producer Barry Mendel. You also get deleted scenes and all sorts of other insights into the film – excellent.