The Reluctant Fundamentalist


Boldly mixing romance and tragedy with the classic arc of ambition thwarted, celebrated director Mira Nair (Monsoon Wedding, Mississippi Masala) brings Mohsin Hamid’s best-selling novel to the big screen with passion and insight, while simultaneously delivering an intensely crackling thriller. Lahore, 2011. At an outdoor café a Pakistani man named Changez (Riz Ahmed) tells Bobby (Liev Schreiber), an American journalist, about his experiences in the United States. Flashback ten years, and we find a younger Changez fresh from Princeton, seeking fortune and glory on Wall Street. The American Dream seems well within his grasp, complete with a smart and gorgeous artist girlfriend, Erica (Kate Hudson). But when the Twin Towers are attacked, a cultural divide slowly begins to crack open between Changez and Erica. Changez’s dream soon begins to slip into nightmare: profiled, wrongfully arrested, strip-searched and interrogated, he is transformed from a well-educated, upwardly mobile businessman to a scapegoat and perceived enemy. With time, he begins to hear the call of his own homeland. Taking us through the culturally rich and beguiling worlds of New York, Lahore and Istanbul, The Reluctant Fundamentalist is a gripping story about conflicting ideologies where perception and suspicion have the power to determine life or death. (Dir. by Mira Nair, 2012, USA/UK, 128 mins., Rated R, IFC Films) Digital