Directed by Stephen Frears from a screenplay by Hanif Kureishi, this film is the story of an ambitious Pakistani Briton and his white lover, played by Daniel Day-Lewis, as they strive for success and hope when they open up a glamorous laundromat.
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One of the most progressive films of the 80s, highlighting unfair British prejudice towards immigration and homosexuality. The dangers of free market capitalism in a world of inequalities and subjectivities is highlighted with quite a damning critique on Thatcherite politics. With hindsight, this is Frears' most potent film that stands the test of time despite the anachronisms of its cinematography and soundtrack.
At first sight, it seems dated and bad, but I feel there is just so much to this. The story is subtle and straightforward, but the way it's executed makes it a great film. It definitely belongs on 80s canon. And the performances are very very good, with obvious emphasis on a young Daniel Day Lewis. I feel that context of its production is necessary to 'get' this film so if you see it, please read about the making of.
This Oscar nominated screenplay by Hanif Kureishi was the perfect fit for Stephen Frears who makes every character interesting.
Funny,with insight into what life is like for Asians in Britain,circa the 80's.
Perceptive,with superb performances.
I guess from a strictly cinematic-historical standpoint this film is quite bold in its subject matter and stuff, but honestly I wasn't really all that impressed. The performances were mostly pretty cringe-worthy, the dialogue was laughably bad and from a technical standpoint the whole film was just straight up messy. Fun to see a young Daniel Day-Lewis though! All-in-all I can't really recommend this one.
Good for a low budget film, but the jumbled way the themes are handled makes the whole thing unfocused. I did like the backdrop of Thatcher's England, since it shows a different kind of reality that Hollywood offered at the same time, but I'm sure there are better works of that era than this (and without the awful bubbling noise!). The acting is a bit stiff, but Day-Lewis has a glimpse of his subsequent greatness.
While the interracial homosexual love story was a first in British mainstream film I found it tame and the chemistry was lacking ( even if a young Day-Lewis was the love interest) I liked much better the relationship with the Pakistani family and the uncle (the cool Saeed Jaffrey) his sexy rebellous daughter and the alcholic father. I would rather have seen more of them - and the film lacks a satisfying ending.