Who's in it? Om Puri, Linda Bassett, Lesley Nicol, Ila Arun, Nadim Sawalha
The plot The dysfunctional and multi-cultural Khan family returns in this sequel to the 1998 British hit comedy, East Is East. It's 1976 in Salford, England, and as usual, life is chaotic in the household of conservative Pakistani immigrant George (Puri), who struggles to marry British culture with the life he remembers from Pakistan, and his British wife Ella (Linda Bassett). Their son, Sajid (Aqib Khan), now 15, is a target for racist bullies at school, and has also been caught shoplifting; so, worried that he's turning into a juvenile delinquent, George drags Sajid off on a father/son holiday back to Pakistan to not only expose him to his roots, but also to understand his father's birthplace. Back in Pakistan, George encounters his submissive first wife (played by Ila Arun), whom he hasn't seen for 30 years, along with his extended family. Initially feeling like an outcast, Sajid re-bonds with his big brother Maneer (Emil Marwa), who had been sent there a year earlier, and George gets a taste of his own medicine when Maneer is not considered a great marriage prospect! Plus, things get even more complicated when Ella arrives on the scene to reclaim her husband and son!
What we liked Though broadly played for laughs, the film, like its predecessor, strikes some serious notes, and the burgeoning relationship between the two wives, across cultural divides, is tinged with a sweet poignancy.
What we didn't like Ditching the earlier film's consistently light-hearted tone, West is West enters sentimental territory and packs fewer laughs.