Film Review – Bangla

Bangla (M)

Directed by: Phaim Bhuiyan

Starring: Phaim Bhuiyan, Carlotta Antonelli

Three and a half stars

Review by: Julian Wright

Born in Italy to parents from Bangladesh, 22-year-old Phaim (Phaim Bhuiyan) has always been caught between two worlds, with his traditional Muslim parents making sure he behaves according to the boundaries of their religion and cultural heritage.

But the quiet, almost nerdy hormone suppressed fellow has never felt the struggle quite as bad as now, when he meets Asia (Carlotta Antonelli), an outgoing punk-type that his family would never approve of.

They are total opposites, but the biggest hurdle is how Phaim will handle the “no sex before marriage” rule.

Bangla is based on writer/director Bhuiyan’s own experiences giving a genuine feeling to the observations and cultural differences his character juggles, but his script still follows rom-com formula rather closely.

banglapic

There are few surprises (if any) in the way of plotting, however, he has made a winning, crowd-pleasing film, which zips along at a brisk pace and is genuinely funny in parts.

Bhuiyan, his cast and their performances are nice to be in the company of for 90 minutes.

The highlight is the fresh perspective; I certainly haven’t seen a film told from such a unique point of view before and it is fun to watch these experiences through a new lens.

Bangla screens as part of the Lavazza Italian Film Festival from October 2 – 23.

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