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The Big Sick

119 Minutes/ Rated R
Directed by: Michael Showalter
Cast: Kumail Nanjiani, Zoe Kazan, Ray Romano, Holly Hunter

Showtimes

  • Thursday, July 27: (5:15), 8:00
  • Friday, July 28 - Sunday, July 30:  (12:00), 2:30, 5:15, 8:00
  • Monday, July 31 - Thursday, August 3:  (5:15), 8:00

A Pakistani-American stand-up comedian falls for an American woman, despite the fact that his family wants him to consent to an arranged marriage with someone from his own culture.

Romantic comedy 'The Big Sick' has a big heart

• 3½ stars out of four •

Calvin Wilson / St. Louis Post-Dispatch

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Kumail (Kumail Nanjiani) is a Pakistani-American comic in Chicago who just wants to get enough laughs to have a shot at a career. One night at a comedy club, he encounters Emily (Zoe Kazan), a young woman who clearly finds him interesting — so much so that they wind up spending a lot of time together. As reluctant as he may be to admit it, Emily is the one for him. But something happens that neither of them could have anticipated: She becomes seriously ill. Kumail finds himself whiling away the hours in a hospital waiting room, in the company of two people he would rather have met under more pleasant circumstances: Emily’s empathetic dad, Terry (Ray Romano), and her hostile mom, Beth (Holly Hunter). If you’re a fan of Nanjiani — who co-stars in HBO’s “Silicon Valley” — you’ll like “The Big Sick.” A comedy-drama that he co-wrote with wife Emily V. Gordon, it’s a frequently hilarious byproduct of their real-life relationship. 

Perhaps director Michael Showalter (“Hello, My Name Is Doris”) was so respectful of the material that he declined to make judicious snips. As it is, he elicits terrific performances — particularly from Romano, who delivers a funny yet deeply felt portrait of one man’s middle-age angst.

“The Big Sick” has a lot of charm. Just don’t expect the revolution in romantic comedy that its aggressive hype would suggest.

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DUNKIRK

PG-13/ 107 Minutes
Directed by: Christopher Nolan
Cast: Tom Hardy, Cilian Murphy, Kenneth Branagh

Showtimes

  • Thursday, July 27: (4:15), 7:00
  • Friday, July 28 - Saturday, July 29:  (1:30), 4:15, 7:00, 9:30
  • Sunday, July 30:  (1:30), 4:15, 7:00
  • Monday, July 31 - Thursday, August 3:  (4:15), 7:00

Acclaimed auteur Christopher Nolan directs this World War II thriller about the evacuation of Allied troops from the French city of Dunkirk before Nazi forces can take hold. Tom Hardy, Kenneth Branagh and Mark Rylance co-star, with longtime Nolan collaborator Hans Zimmer providing the score.

Christopher Nolan's WWII-set 'Dunkirk' fulfills its mission

• Four stars out of four •

- - Calvin Wilson St. Louis Post-Dispatch

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“Dunkirk” is a magnificent achievement and the rare big-budget mainstream film that stretches the medium while fulfilling the mission to entertain.

Working from his own screenplay, director Christopher Nolan (“The Dark Knight Rises”) balances three time frames to create an immersive experience that transcends expectations of what a war film can be. In a savvy move, not one Nazi face is seen — Nolan depicts their ominous presence through their actions.

Oscar winner Rylance (“Bridge of Spies”) and Nolan regular Murphy (“Inception”) turn in standout performances as men who respond to the gathering chaos in different ways.

Seldom has a film so eloquently captured the craziness, brutality and arbitrariness of war. “Dunkirk” just might be Nolan’s masterpiece.

 

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