by Alex Chiles, who you can find rejoicing in character development and relationships in film on Twitter @axchiles
One sentence review: The Big Sick is perfect parts heart and humor, adding levity to its heavy autobiographical story.
Full review: At face value, The Big Sick is a romantic comedy. You have a meet-cute, a budding relationship, a series of obstacles, growing and changing, and a resolution. However, this film has much more to say than just giving you that satisfying familiar arc. It gives you an honest sense of how overwhelming the hospital experience can be for families without making the staff look incompetent. It digs into the immigrant experience and the clash between the culture you’re from and the one you’re in, all from the viewpoint of a young man still figuring out his place in it all.
The strength of this film is in the relationships, and not just the main one. Its central relationship hits all the rom-com beats but often in ways you don’t expect, and has the courage to give you some of those familiar rom-com situations and then immediately reject them. The relationships between the two sets of parents serve as a perfect contrast to each other and help inform his current life situation, but all without being too obvious. And that’s exactly what impressed me most with The Big Sick, is how subtle it manages to be. He doesn’t have a big eureka moments, his journey isn’t a perfect arc. He learns and changes, but it’s slow. He melds advice from many different people in his life. He tries to make the right decisions, even if it’s not always in the best way. It feels real, not just because it is, but because of how well it was translated to the screen. To me, that’s quite the accomplishment.
Should you watch this movie? Absolutely. I think this one would be difficult to dislike, honestly.
Where? Technically, a small screen is fine for this one. But if you like this type of film and wish more like it would be in wide release, pay your dollars and see it at your local theater.
Top 10 so far:
- Get Out
- The Big Sick
- Wonder Woman
- Lego Batman Movie
- John Wick: Chapter 2
- Guardians in the Galaxy Vol. 2
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