Aqib Khan, Dhanalaxmi Padmakumar, Jimi Mistry, John Branwell, Om Puri, Raj Bhansali, Sanjeev Attari, Sheeba Chaddha, Thomas Russell, Vanessa Hehir, Vijay Raaz and Yograj Singh
West Is West Movie Review
June 11, 2011 06:14:19 PM IST By Pankaj Sabnani, Glamsham Editorial
The comic caper EAST IS EAST was a sleeper hit when it released way back in 1999. Now, the promos of its sequel WEST IS WEST gave an impression that it would be a fun ride, full of hilarious moments. But it isn't. And that's not a bad thing after all, as its heartwarming drama more than makes up for the lack of humour.
Om Puri plays the authoritarian father George Khan settled in England. His youngest son Sajid, (Aqub Khan) is a victim of racist attacks in his British school as his father is a Pakistani. Even at home, he's constantly at the receiving end of George's wrath. He uses the 'F' word frequently to vent out his frustration. Fearing that he his losing his grip on Sajid, George takes him along to Pakistan. But in the process he has to face his family he had left behind 30 years ago. How the father and son discover themselves all over again is what follows.
Director Andy DeEmmony treats a sensitive topic with great maturity and honestly. It's hard not to feel for George, who's torn between his two wives. Even the conflict of Sajid, who's unable to connect with his Pakistani culture and roots, is very well established. It very subtly gives some important lessons about life.
The scene in which George's British wife Ella (Linda Bassett) and his Pakistani wife Rashida (Ila Arun) communicate without knowing each other's language is very emotional. Also, the confrontation scene between George and Ella is very touching. The bonding shown between Sajid and his Pakistani friend Zaid (Raj Bhansali) is superb and so is his relationship with a local pir, who helps him in finding his identity. Peter Robertson's cinematography is nice. Jon Gregory and Stephen O'Connell's editing is efficient. Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy's music is excellent and gels well with the film.
OM PURI proves yet again what a great actor he is. Watch out for the scene in which he breaks down in the end. Aqub Khan plays his part to perfection. Raj Bhansali is good. Linda Bassett acts really well. Ila Arun is superb and strikingly real. Emil Marwa is decent as George's elder son. Leslie Nichol is hilarious as the British Auntie Annie.
WEST IS WEST is an unpretentious and poignant drama made with a lot of heart. Watching it certainly won't be 'west' of time.