East Is East

1999

Comedy  Drama  

3
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - certified fresh 78%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - upright 78%
IMDb Rating 6.9

Synopsis


Uploaded By: OTTO
October 18, 2019 at 8:28 pm

Cast

Archie Panjabi as Meenah Khan
Lesley Nicol as Auntie Annie
Gary Lewis as Mark
Jimi Mistry as Tariq Khan
720p 1080p
BluRay
1280*714
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 36 min
P/S 13 / 50
BluRay
1920*1072
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 36 min
P/S 14 / 49

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by (oxblood) 9 / 10

A different side of England

I wish there were more movies about the different cultures in the UK. Not just the Anglo, but the Asian and West Indian perspectives. Even the Southeast Asian view. The Middle Easterners have shown great strides with movies like "Bend It Like Beckham" and a few others. This movie got away from me until recently. I saw in the library video section and decided to check it out. The box is very misleading. They put a young interracial couple, front and center on the cover when actually their subplot is very peripheral to the story. I guess the movie studio figured they'd get a wider audience interested with younger faces on the cover since the main characters look to be in their 50s.George Khan (Om Puri) has left his native Pakistan to live in the UK with its soveriegnty ties. Though he has a wife back in his homeland (she is only mentioned, not seen), he marries a white Englishwoman, Ella (Lynda Bassett). They have 7 kids: 6 boys and 1 girl. Flash forward to the late 60s (where the movie actually begins) and we see his kids are truly English in behavior though he stresses that they must go to Mosque to study and worship. His oldest is to be wed in an arranged marriage to a woman he hardly knows. He runs out in the middle of the ceremony in fear, embarrassing his family especially his father who disowns him. This sets the tone of the movie. His kids are English-born and want to live like their friends in their working-class neighborhood but George wants to raise them as traditional Muslims, despite opposition from his wife, Ella, who only wants the kids to be happy. She tries to help them avoid run-ins with their father who despite his cheerfulness is quite an ogre when angered. The kids range in attitude and indifference toward George's attempts to introduce them to the traditional ways. This is a decent introduction to immigrant life in the UK especially since it's set during a time when there was political strife over immigration of non-whites into Britain. Though it's an effective comedy, it also touches on the frustration immigrants of any culture go through to hold onto or reject their identity. The only thing marring this movie is a domestic violence scene that may bother some. Still a very good movie worth seeing.

Reviewed by Roland E. Zwick (magneteach@aol.com) 9 / 10

low keyed comedy/drama

`East is East,' something of a modern day version of `Fiddler on the Roof,' explores the culture clash that occurs in the context of a half Pakistani/half British family living in early 1970's England. George Khan is a Muslim who, upon immigrating to Great Britain in 1937, married a British woman despite the fact that his first wife still lives in Pakistan. Now, twenty five years later, the still happily married couple lives in a small apartment with their daughter and six sons all of whom have been raised to honor their father's religion and traditions. Yet, like Tevye, George is suddenly confronted with the fact that, as times change and the world moves on, the younger generation will no longer abide by the archaic rituals of an ancient age. In many ways, this is the flip side of `Fiddler' in that here the reluctant marriage partners are sons and not daughters. For indeed, George's ultimate goal in life is to arrange marriages for his teenaged sons within the accepted tradition of the Muslim faith. But culture is often a force that parents try in vain to withstand and these children, raised in the far more open and liberated society of `mod' England, are not about to take such dictatorial parental control lying down.In the script based on his play, Ayub Khan-Din provides an evenhanded and comprehensive view of the situation. George is not presented to us as an inflexible or unreasonable ogre, yet at the same time, he will, in his frustration, strike out even physically at the children and the wife who seem to oppose him. We sense the fear that runs through him that, if his sons are allowed to exercise their freedom in this one crucial area, the family will sever that connection with the past which brings stability to their lives. Thus, without any traditions to anchor them, George dreads that he and the family will be cut adrift in a seemingly rudderless world that suddenly seems in the 1970's to be in such great and terrifying moral flux. Moreover, we are left to ponder the strange contradiction between George's own words and the choices he himself has made. After all, his opting to marry a British woman who does not share the tenets of his faith obviously went beyond the bounds of the very traditions he is now so dogmatically insisting his sons uphold. This type of ambiguity within the characters enhances their credibility, for indeed life and the people we meet therein come replete with such maddening inconsistencies.Khan-Din and director Damien O'Donnell establish an effective balance between low-key humor and occasionally searing drama. The relationship between the husband and wife who comprise this interracial marriage is complexly realized and fully drawn; the obvious difficulties the two have experienced as a result of the nonconformity of their union has obviously strengthened their devotion to one another and they appear to greatly enjoy each other's company. She has undoubtedly made any number of concessions and compromises to her husband's belief system, yet she has retained her British feistiness and knows how far to let George go before she draws the line, especially when it comes to protecting the rights and happiness of her own progeny. In a similar way, we see, in thorough detail, the complexities that make up the two very different sets of relationships between the respective parents and their children. Din and O'Donnell have, wisely, chosen to limit the scope of their film by downplaying the broader theme of how a suspicious and prejudiced society deals with so unconventional a marriage and family. We see only bits and pieces of this in the form of bigoted comments uttered by a disapproving neighbor and a mere mention of a political rally intended to rouse the populace on the issue of `repatriation.' Instead, the authors concentrate almost exclusively on the internecine struggles taking place within this one family. This helps to keep the scale of the film life-sized, thus enhancing our identification with the characters and their universal parent/child conflicts. For, in a way, the Khan family is really not undergoing any crisis not already familiar to countless families the world over, as parents cope with children eager to cut the filial chords and establish life on their own terms and as children, likewise, deal with parents who want to determine the course those lives will take. The Khans just happen to provide a more heightened and intensified view of this subject.`East is East' is a small movie but an absorbing one. Thanks to uniformly excellent performances from a gifted cast and a careful modulation between humor and drama, the film emerges as a compelling and insightful glimpse into a life that is, as for all of us, so full of both terrifying and wonderful complexity.

Reviewed by Dodger-9 9 / 10

Touching and unpredictable

Engaging, well-made comedy based on the play by Ayub Khan-Din concerning the misfortunes of an Anglo-Pakistani family verging on the brink of change in early 1970s Salford. Traditional dad Om Puri is shocked when his oldest son (Ian Aspinall) runs away from an arranged wedding, and decides that from now on his family will be more respectful. Among his plans are the weddings of two of his other sons, both of whom are far from delighted with the idea. Khan-Din's fine script never resorts to cliche resulting in a funny, study of the clash between the old and the new.Linda Bassett as superb as Puri's second wife, an English woman who straddles both camps between her husband's traditionalism and her kids' sense of rebellion while nonetheless attempting to keep her own dignity.Fine performances from Chris Bisson and Jimmi Harkishin (Coronation Street) and Jimi Mistry (EastEnders) while little Jordan Routledge is great as the parka-loving Sajid.However, it's Puri who shines as the complex father, desperately trying to hang on to tradition and finding nothing but rebellion from his family.The ending could easily have been a familiar family seeks revenge on their overbearing father but what results is a refreshing change to the many TV movies that usually opt for an easy solution to a difficult problem.

Reviewed by chri_fi 9 / 10

Well-made drama about culture clashes

Three teenagers are sitting in front of a TV, enjoying their large helpings of pork sausage and bacon. Suddenly they hear a door opening and immediately start cleaning up all of the dishes and unsuccessfully try to get rid of the fumes of grilled bacon and sausages that billowed through the whole house. This is, of course, not depicting the normal life of three teenagers, but taken from the film "East Is East" by Damien O'Donnell. It deals with the story of a family in England in the 1970s with a Pakistani father (multi-facetted enacted by Om Puri) who still believes in his Pakistani traditions and his Muslim religion and an English mother (great performance by Linda Bassett) who tries to give her seven children as much freedom as all of their "fully English" friends enjoy. This movie was labeled as a Comedy both in theaters and on DVD or VHS, but anybody looking for light-hearted entertainment fitting for a Saturday night will be hugely disappointed. This movie is out to teach the viewer about how difficult it is to get two very different cultures to not only co-exist peacefully next to each other, but to merge them to create a new one. The script by Ayub Khan-Din, who also wrote the book and the stage version of this movie, does have its funny moments, and the whole cast, including the children, is in for some good laughs. But the more intense moments are those where the viewer has to deal with outbursts of domestic violence or things like arranged marriages that seem so far away and cruel to Westerners. The cast shows its brilliance in those intimate moments. Even though the script might sometimes appear to be too ambitious ? there are just too many characters all developing in a very distinct manner and all crucial to the movie ? the movie can be recommended to anyone who is not looking for a standard comedy and is willing to have his views on life challenged.

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2 Comments

firdoskhan profile
0
firdoskhan October 20, 2019 at 12:39 pm

Plz also upload west is west

MDR_UK profile
0
MDR_UK October 19, 2019 at 11:20 am

Thank you OTTO