The Big Sick is based on the real-life love story of screenwriters Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon. Born in Pakistan, Kumail moved to Chicago with his family as a boy. His parents (Anupam Kher and Zenobia Shroff, both excellent in their roles), devout Muslims, expect him to agree to an arranged marriage. Whenever Kumail turns up at their house for dinner, a potential bride turns up. Meanwhile, while neither one of them is willing to admit it, Kumail and Emily are falling in love.
During the first half of the film it’s fun to watch the romance develop. There’s genuine humor in the dinner scenes with Kumail’s family, and laughs courtesy of the comedy club stuff (onstage and backstage) with Kumail’s fellow comedians Aidy Bryant, Bo Burnham and Kurt Braunohler. It all works rather nicely.
But then something very unexpected happens. Emily is put into a medically induced coma. While The Big Sick never stops providing some laughs, the second half of the film is decidedly more serious. Kumail finds himself spending endless hours in a hospital waiting room with two people he would rather have met under very different circumstances: Emily’s empathetic dad, Terry (Ray Romano), and her brash mom, Beth (Holly Hunter). There’s no telling how long the wait will be. Despite the awkward situation, the long wait results in some of the films biggest laughs.
Director Michael Showalter (Hello, My Name is Doris) does a good job juggling multiple plot threads, while keeping everything moving. The success of The Big Sick is also a credit to Kumail Nanjiani and Zoe Kazan, who have a believable and heartwarming chemistry together, and an outstanding supporting cast.
Presented in the 1.85:1 aspect ratio, this 1080p transfer is competent, but not great. Much of the movie displayed a nice level of clarity and delineation, but there were notable exceptions. Occasional wide shots appeared a bit softer than expected. Thankfully, there are no print flaws to speak of. While the teal and orange color palette seemed unimpressive, the image reproduced them quite well. Blacks showed a nice level of depth, while low light seemed a tad dark.
The DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack is a standard comedy mix. It’s not particularly involving, but that’s okay for a movie of this kind. Effects are given the necessary punch required. Audio quality is fine, with dialogue sounding clear, and concise throughout.
English SDH, and Spanish subtitles are included.
The following extras are available:
- Audio Commentary with Director Michael Showalter, Producer Barry Mendel, Actor/Writer Kumail Nanjiani, and Writer Emily V. Gordon: All four sit together for this running, screen-specific commentary. They discuss the real story the film is based on, fact vs. fiction, the characters, story, locations, the cast, music, and more.
- A Personal Journey: The Making of The Big Sick (HD, 14:59) Various cast and crew discuss the projects origin and development, as well as the casting process and performances.
- The Real Story (HD, 7:11) Writer/actor Kumail Nanjiani and Co-writer Emily V. Gordon discuss the aspects of their relationship that are dealt with in the film.
- 2017 SXSW Panel (HD, 11:32) Kumail Nanjiani, Emily V. Gordon, Producer Barry Mendel, and producer Judd Apatow discuss the development of the project, the film’s depiction of Muslims, the mixing of fact and fiction, etc.
- The Big Sick: The Other Stuff (HD, 3:47) Alternate/cut lines that aren’t long enough to qualify as deleted scenes.
- Deleted Scenes (HD, 10:06) Eight in total.
- DVD Copy of the film.
- Digital HD Copy.
Movie title: The Big Sick (2017)
Director(s): Michael Showalter
Actor(s): Kumail Nanjiani , Zoe Kazan , Holly Hunter , Ray Romano , Adeel Akhtar , Anupam Kher
Genre: Comedy, Romance