It’s hard to believe it’s been a decade since East Is East. That story of a south Asian family carving out an identity for themselves in seventies England struck a chord wherever people define themselves between cultures – which these days is everywhere. In the heartwarming and often hilarious follow-up, original screenwriter Ayub Khan-Din flips the script, taking this boisterous family from bleak Salford back to the hot dust of rural Pakistan. The much-loved Om Puri leads a spirited cast in this coming-of-age story about the to and fro between Britain and south Asia.
After insulting his father’s country bumpkin background, teenaged Sajid (Aqib Khan) is forced to accompany his dad on a month-long trip to Pakistan, where he is expected to learn the customs of his family’s life. Sajid has been on the receiving end of endless racist bullying in his Salford schoolyard and wants nothing to do with this remote side of his lineage. While George (Puri) tries to discipline his defiant son, he has his own ghosts with which to contend; this trip is his first to Pakistan since he deserted his first wife and young family thirty years ago. As Sajid confronts the challenges and splendours of a completely foreign way of life, so too must George confront the legacy of his past choices.
Woven into these narratives is Sajid’s older brother Maneer (Emil Marwa), who’s been living in Pakistan for over a year and is desperate to find a wife. Matchmaking proves to be more difficult than anticipated and, while Maneer is generally amenable to Pakistani culture, he is enamoured by the trends of the West and besotted, inexplicably, with Nana Mouskouri music. As Sajid becomes increasingly aware of the charms of the opposite sex, he keeps his eyes peeled on Maneer’s behalf and spots a young woman who, against all odds, may be the answer to his brother’s prayers.
Director Andy De Emmony captures the verve of young and old and the convergence of east and west in this uplifting film about a fascinating family in transitional times. –TIFF
Andy is an award winning director in all formats. From commercials to TV series, and comedy to drama.
He started his career on Spitting Image, directing ten series of the BAFTA nominated satirical show. And has directed many sitcoms including RED DWARF (Winning an Emmy) and FATHER TED (Winning a BAFTA).
After moving across to drama, he was BAFTA nominated for the first series of Cutting It and The Wife Of Bath one of two Canterbury Tales he directed, and again for Fantabulosa! starring Michael Sheen and based on the Kenneth Williams Diaries.
Other notable credits include Life Isn’t All Ha Ha Hee Hee, the three-part adaptation of the novel by Meera Syal, and the series At Home with the Braithwaites, A Thing Called Love and 55 Degrees North.
Andy recently directed the single drama Recovery (starring David Tenant and Sarah Parish) and Filth, The Mary Whitehouse Story, starring Julie Walters. His last completed film, God on Trial, set in Auschwitz was broadcast… read more
A reviewer wrote: "It raises and addresses that deep-seated desire engrained in of us all: the sense of belonging and need for identity, w/out which we fail to really understand ourselves." I agree. I also love Master's comment to Sajid: "We're all part of the same story, and we in our turn will leave traces too. What we leave and how we choose to live is entirely up to us. That’s what makes life so interesting."