The Big Sick is one of the biggest surprises of 2017. This is a truly wonderful, smart, funny, charming and engaging romantic comedy and the fact that is loosely based on a true story makes it even more enjoyable.
The movie follows the life of Kumail Nanjiani who plays himself more or less in a screenplay co-written by he and his real-life wife Emily about his struggles to achieve his dream of becoming a stand-up comic while earning a living as a taxi driver. He meets Emily (Zoe Kazan) during one of his routines while she’s heckling him and they strike up an immediate chemistry, so much so that he invites her back to his place to watch Night of the Living Dead.
Eventually, Kumail has to face the pressures of introducing Emily to his family, an Indian Muslim family who has a tradition of arranging marriages for their kids. When they find out Emily is white, this causes automatic strife between Kumail and his family and soon he has to choose between love and family.
They go their separate ways for a while until Emily gets sick with an infection and then he’s introduced to her parents (Ray Romano and Holly Hunter) who also don’t quite know what to make of her new beau.
Co-produced by Judd Apatow, the movie offers great insight into things such as cultural differences and how to make love work under the most difficult of circumstances. We also get a unique dynamic of how people are often forced to choose between what they love and whom they love and it’s not always easy. At times, it’s also excruciatingly honest when it comes to relationships we have with everyone in our lives and how to keep everyone, including ourselves, happy and fulfilled. Oh, and it’s funny.
It may just raise the standards of romantic comedies and it’s another sure-fire contender for my 10 best list of 2017. And that’s no joke.