Keep up-to-date on your favourite artists and movies, track gig and release dates, and join in the conversation.
Want more? Listen to our discussion of 'Ali's Wedding' on SWITCHCast
SEARCH RESULTS FOR
It's the perfect time to spend some quality time with your family - so settle in with our top streaming recommendations!x
review, Ali's Wedding, Ali's, Wedding, film, movie, latest movies, new movie, movie ratings, current movie reviews, latest films, recent movies, current movies, movie critics, new movie reviews, latest movie reviews, latest movies out, the latest movies, review film, latest cinema releases, Australian reviews, cinema, cinema reviews, Osamah Sami, Don Hany, Robert Rabiah, Ryan Corr, Helana Sawires, Jeffrey Walker film rating

ALI'S WEDDING

★★★

A MULTICULTURAL AUSSIE COMEDY

THEATRICAL REVIEW
LATEST REVIEWS
By Jake Watt
30th August 2017

Based on true stories from the life of Osamah Sami, ‘Ali’s Wedding’ follows a young Iraqi-Australian Muslim in Melbourne who deceives his parents into thinking he is studying medicine while caught between an arranged marriage and a love match. Ali is the kind-hearted son of a Muslim cleric who, despite the best of intentions, just can’t seem to make the right life choices in his efforts to make his father proud.

What will Ali do to live up to these impossible expectations? Tell some absolute whoppers, mostly.

Sami, who co-wrote this Aussie comedy with Andrew Knight (the pair received the Australian Writers Guild award for best feature screenplay last October), stars as the titular Ali. Don Hany (‘East West 101’) plays Ali's father, a kindly Muslim cleric and pillar of the community. Helana Sawires plays the independent-minded Dianne, whose devout Iranian father refuses to let her go to university and mix with Westerners. Ali is understandably smitten with Dianne – Sawires is luminous in the role.

SWITCH: 'ALI'S WEDDING' TRAILER

‘Ali’s Wedding’ shares a few DNA strands with other comedies (a line from ‘Annie Hall’ is riffed on early in the film), most notably the Judd Apatow-produced ‘The Big Sick’. That film, also largely autobiographical, followed a Pakistani bachelor awkwardly negotiating arranged marriages, religion and cultural expectations in Chicago.

Unlike ‘The Big Sick’, this film takes place entirely within the Muslim community (the only memorable white character is Ryan Corr’s Wazza), with some Arabic and Farsi dialogue. This is significant for a local film, presenting audiences with a slice of Australian life that many will be unfamiliar with (or even fearful of). Also of note is the amount of warmth, humour and affection with which Ali’s community is lovingly rendered.

‘Ali’s Wedding’ is the first feature film to be directed by Jeffrey Walker, who has previously helmed TV shows like ‘Modern Family’ and ‘Jack Irish’. There isn’t a lot of visual flash, but Walker expertly utilises various locations around Melbourne and country Victoria to immerse the audience in Ali’s world. Ali’s home, workplace and his local mosque are brought to life with obvious personal detail.

Also of note is the amount of warmth, humour and affection with which Ali’s community is lovingly rendered.

However, the film isn’t without some flaws. Like ‘The Big Sick’, there are still a few stereotypes rattling around: Ali’s Muslim parents are pushy and eager for their hapless son to become a doctor and get married to the nearest single brown young Muslim woman. The women in the community, while depicted as more intelligent and intuitive than the men, don’t have much personal agency, either.

Casting-wise, a very funny Don Hany is only seven years older than Osamah Sami, his onscreen son. Sami, at 34-years old, is a little old to be playing the youthful Ali. Occasionally, this gets distracting.

More cracks in the film emerge when the script tries to cram Sami’s autobiographical, authentic-feeling story into the conventional structure of a romantic comedy. When Ali’s central deceit is discovered late in the piece, the narrative gets a bit clunky and the tone gradually blands out, the film moving towards a slightly saccharine finish line.

Australia is multicultural. There are Greeks, there are Italians, Arabs, Indians, and Chinese – a variety of cultures. And it’s time, definitely, that this was more widely acknowledged. Local films that mix authenticity and heart, like ‘Ali’s Wedding’, are a great start.

FAST FACTS
RELEASE DATE: 31/08/2017
RUN TIME: 1h 50m
CAST: Osamah Sami
Don Hany
Robert Rabiah
Ryan Corr
Helana Sawires
DIRECTOR: Jeffrey Walker
WRITERS: Osamah Sami
Andrew Knight
PRODUCERS: Helen Panckhurst
Sheila Jayadev
SCORE: Nigel Westlake
www.aliswedding.com.au
aliswedding
aliswedding
alisweddingmovie
Want more? Listen to our discussion of 'Ali's Wedding' on SWITCHCast 
TOP-RATED REVIEWS
Lockdown and Catch Up - The best family films streaming right now
TRENDINGLOCKDOWN AND CATCH UPThe best family films streaming right now
28 Days Later - ...15 years later
TRENDING28 DAYS LATER...15 years later
Birds of Prey - I'm here to report a terrible crime: DC has saved cinema
TRENDINGBIRDS OF PREYI'm here to report a terrible crime: DC has saved cinema
Vivarium - What makes a house a (horrific) home?
TRENDINGVIVARIUMWhat makes a house a (horrific) home?
Gallipoli - A powerful and important film remembered
TRENDINGGALLIPOLIA powerful and important film remembered
Inseparable Bros - A heartwarming tale about disability and the power of friendship
TRENDINGINSEPARABLE BROSA heartwarming tale about disability and the power of friendship
The Wolf's Call - Suspense, silliness and sonar sweeps
TRENDINGTHE WOLF'S CALLSuspense, silliness and sonar sweeps
Dosed - Getting clean on psychotropic medicine
TRENDINGDOSEDGetting clean on psychotropic medicine
Romantic Road - Falling in love with India, the Rolls Royce and each other
TRENDINGROMANTIC ROADFalling in love with India, the Rolls Royce and each other
Five Feet Apart - Breathing borrowed air and clichés
TRENDINGFIVE FEET APARTBreathing borrowed air and clichés
Blue - A thought-provoking underwater journey
TRENDINGBLUEA thought-provoking underwater journey
The Odd Family: Zombie on Sale - An extremely silly zomedy
TRENDINGTHE ODD FAMILY: ZOMBIE ON SALEAn extremely silly zomedy
Lion - A raw and powerful journey of identity
TRENDINGLIONA raw and powerful journey of identity
The Hunt - Blunt, lazy and undeserving of controversy
TRENDINGTHE HUNTBlunt, lazy and undeserving of controversy
A Guide to Second Date Sex - A quintessentially awkward British romantic comedy
TRENDINGA GUIDE TO SECOND DATE SEXA quintessentially awkward British romantic comedy
Midsommar - Ari Aster brings the gore but lacks the emotion
TRENDINGMIDSOMMARAri Aster brings the gore but lacks the emotion
Wet Woman in the Wind - A sexy struggle for conquest
TRENDINGWET WOMAN IN THE WINDA sexy struggle for conquest
The Personal History of David Copperfield - Charles Dickens' classic reimagined through a comedic lens
TRENDINGWIN THE PERSONAL HISTORY OF DAVID COPPERFIELDCharles Dickens' classic reimagined through a comedic lens
Jumanji: The Next Level - Adventure sequel is serious family fun
TRENDINGJUMANJI: THE NEXT LEVELAdventure sequel is serious family fun
Midsommar: The Director's Cut - Ari Aster elevates an already remarkable film to a masterpiece
TRENDINGMIDSOMMAR: THE DIRECTOR'S CUTAri Aster elevates an already remarkable film to a masterpiece
© 2011 - 2020 midnightproductions
All rights reserved

Support SWITCH | Disclaimer | Contact Us