The Big Sick (2017). I may not be the funniest of stand up comedians. But if my girlfriend is Zoe Kazan and she’s so in love with me, I’m definitely more than willing to give up everything just to be with her. And I mean everything—including my own family. Wait. That would only be the case if I’m Pakistani or Indian and my family is still very much into pre-arranged marriage.
I once work with an Indian guy who now lives in the US. And he told me that everytime they visit his mother, she still tells him that she could have arranged the most beautiful wife for him, that she knew a number of women who could have been his perfect match. And he’s like married for what–like nearly twenty years? I wonder how this thing about “in-laws” works with them. You know, that relationship between a man’s mother and his wife. But I digress.
That’s basically what The Big Sick is all about, that, and what the title says. I don’t want to spoil the plot, you have to watch this movie if you want to know. No. You can’t read other reviews, professional or otherwise, or check IMDB. You really have to watch it only so you’ll know the plot.
Now this guy I’m talking about, he’s probably more American than any American I ever know—which is zero— in that he’s so into burgers and steaks. And he was like “how come no one told us patties and steaks are so tasty when we were kids?” And he knew the moment he tasted the meat, there’s no going back.
So the first time he came back from the US, he knew he owe his mom an apology. He said, “Mama, I hope you still considers me your son. Because I think I’m losing my religion. Like in that R.E.M. song. And I mean no disrespect to you, your cooking, our culture or religion, but medium rare steak is the best tasting food I ever tasted my whole life.”
Which is to say, he probably worships steak more than his brother in India do cows.
Now seriously, if you’re looking for a romantic movie with some raunchy interracial sex, heartfelt drama, an honest portrayal of South Asian culture in the US, then go watch The Big Sick.
Tampopo (1985). Loved it for the food, deviant sex, “ramen western” and feel good story. Trivia: One of the supporting actors is a still young Ken Watanabe. If you’ve already tasted Japanese ramen, you’ll surely love this movie. And this movie has two of the most wonderful things to experience in this world. Namely, devouring a bowl of hot tasty meaty ramen and—I know you’re gonna say sex, but no—watching a feel good Japanese mo…