Parents' Guide to

The Big Sick

By Betsy Bozdech, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Thoughtful romantic dramedy has swearing, drinking, sex.

Movie R 2017 119 minutes
The Big Sick Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 14+

Based on 6 parent reviews

age 15+

Feels like a missed opportunity for more

There was a lot of talk about this film and I was excited to watch it. There were moments where the film goes into traditional rom com tropes, but Nanjani pulls it off with his charm and his jokes. The film plugs along exploring different dimensions and addressing a multitude of issues. The biggest let down unfortunately is when it seems to collapse to the whole Pakistani (immigrant) parents do not understand that I want to pursue my American dreams and Pakistani parents think their kids are selfish. After almost 2 hours of working hard to make us think this is a different type of film that is traversing new ground it takes a right turn into American Dream rehash-ville. It is a shame, because Nanjani's character does not seem to amplify the conversation, it just seems to fall back to the same ole tropes.
age 18+


Characters are funny and likable. Real world struggles and complexity. Root for a happy ending and for resolve. Didn't know anything about this movie walking in and regret I cannot see it again for the first time.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (6 ):
Kids say (6 ):

Director Michael Showalter's engaging, thoughtful film is most easily billed as a romantic comedy, but it has far more depth and dimension than your standard rom-com. For one thing, Emily is comatose for about half the movie, which means Kumail's primary relationships shift to the new, often-shaky ones he's forming with Beth and Terry and the longstanding but sometimes almost as shaky ones he has with his own parents. Having to step up on his own, with Emily out of the picture, is what finally helps Kumail grow up and move forward in his life.

It's also what yields some of The Big Sick's funniest and most touching scenes. While early interactions between Kumail and Emily and Kumail and his comic buddies are funny and cute, they're nothing we haven't seen in indie romantic comedies before. But the scenes of Kumail getting to know Beth and Terry feel fresh and different; strangers thrown together by circumstance, they bond over everything from stress eating to talking about the one thing they do have in common: Emily. Only real life could have produced a story with these kinds of twists, turns, and odd bedfellows -- thankfully, because The Big Sick is based on Kumail and Emily's actual relationship, we know that it will all turn out all right in the end, with a lot of laughs and significant insights along the way.

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