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West Is West (2010)

 -  Comedy | Drama  -  25 February 2011 (UK)
6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 1,944 users  
Reviews: 17 user | 39 critic

An immigrant father decides to take his truant son back to the old country.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Aqib Khan ...
...
George / Jahangir Khan
...
...
Mr. Jordan
Thomas Russell ...
Hughsy (Bully) (as Tom Russell)
...
...
Vanessa Hehir ...
Esther
John Branwell ...
Store Detective
Yograj Singh ...
Customs Official
Vijay Raaz ...
Tanvir
Karamjit Anmol ...
Cousin 1
Sanjeev Attari ...
Cousin 2
Raj Bhansali ...
Zaid
Dhanalaxmi Padmakumar ...
Raushana Khan
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Storyline

Salford, North of England, 1975. The now much diminished, but still claustrophobic and dysfunctional, Khan family continues to struggle for survival. Sajid, the youngest Khan, the runt of the litter, is deep in pubescent crisis under heavy assault both from his father's tyrannical insistence on Pakistani tradition, and from the fierce bullies in the schoolyard. So, in a last, desperate attempt to 'sort him out', his father decides to pack him off to Mrs Khan No 1 and family in the Punjab, the wife and daughters he had abandoned 35 years earlier. It is not long before Ella Khan (Mrs Khan No2) with a small entourage from Salford, England, swiftly follows to sort out the mess, past and present. Written by Sales Repesentative

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

salford | pakistan | england | bully | runt | See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

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Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

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Language:

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Release Date:

25 February 2011 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Maarav who maarav  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

£758,226 (UK) (25 February 2011)

Gross:

£2,368,446 (UK) (18 March 2011)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

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Did You Know?

Goofs

On first arrival in Pakistan, George and Saj step out of what appears to be an Airbus A320 series aircraft. These aircraft were first delivered to airlines in 1988, 12 years after the storyline. See more »

Connections

Featured in Breakfast: Episode dated 20 October 2010 (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

PIYA TU AB TO AAJA
Performed by Asha Bhosle and Rahul Dev Burman
Written by Rahul Dev Burman, Majrooh Sultanpuri (as Majrooh)
Publisher Saregama India Ltd.
Under License from Saregama Plc
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A good film that kneads fun into what usually are painful immigration / identity stories
17 April 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

*Note: I did not see the prequel East is East, but this film is self-contained and I was perfectly able to watch it on it's own.

Set in 1970's England, West is West is a story about a family with a Pakistani Father and a Caucasian Mother. Aqib Khan plays Sajid, who is a budding teenager going through a tough time in his life. He is being bullied at school, waging war with his parents, and stealing things while he plays hooky. In order to straighten him out Sajid's father George played by Om Puri, takes him back to his ethnic roots in Pakistan.

As soon as they get off the plane Sajid aggressively resists his new surroundings. Wanting nothing more than to return back home to his English life Sajid drags his feet hating the clothes, the people, and especially the fact that his house is without plumbing. However, slowly though the help of a friendship and a wise guru Sajid learns to calm his heart and appreciate his Pakistani identity.

The father George in tandem has issues of his own. For 20 plus years he has lived a double life leaving behind his 1st Pakistani wife and some children. Neglected most of their lives the only thing his Pakistani family have received over the decades are checks in the mail and the occasional scribblings on paper. Withered and aged George's Pakistani wife wishes George had never returned to reignite her conflicting feelings of obligation and resentment.

This film is as much about George as it is about Sajid but there are also a host of other characters in this film with stories of their own. There is George's English wife who must reconcile with her Pakistani alternate. A task seemingly impossible when words traveling to each other can only amount to gibberish. There is also another one of George's sons who cannot arrange a marriage for the fear that he too will leave his Pakistani wife just like his father.

During the first twenty minutes of the film I got a little scared that I'd be sitting through a 100 minutes of overhanded moments of characters crying and yelling about how they struggle with culture clashes. However West is West is filled with funny moments of cultural miscommunication and touching moments of reconnection. There are plenty of laughs and most audiences will find themselves smiling at the end of the film.

The acting is good and at some moments moving. The cinematography, editing and music are all fairly well done. You won't be knocked out of seat with laughter, but you definitely won't feel as though you've suffered. Although a little formulaic West is West is a great film that is able to maintain a nice balance of lightness with the serious and depressing issue of family separation.

Who this film is not for: -Very serious movie goers who like sharp and determined stances on culture clashes. -People not interested in ethnic stories of immigration.


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