Religion and the Media - review of the film "East is East".

Authors Avatar by _bryonyrebecca (student)

East is east

(C) Choose an issue from religion & community cohesion presented in one form of the media and explain whether the presentation was fair to the religious people or not.

The Background

"George" Khan is a Pakistani Muslim who has lived in England since 1937 and has been married to Ella, a British Roman Catholic of Irish descent, for 25 years. They have 7 children together: Nazir, Abdul, Tariq, Saleem, Maneer, Meenah, and Sajid, and run a popular english fish and chips shop. The film starts with oldest son Nazir facing an arranged marriage to a Pakistani girl but finding himself unable to go through with it. He runs out at the start of the ceremony in front of all the family and guests, to his mother's distress and his father's chagrin, the latter spurring George on to disown his eldest son, forever telling anyone who asks about him that he is dead.

The next family crisis is the discovery that youngest son Sajid somehow never got circumcised as is preferred in Islam (which, comically, sends the Muslim children in the mosque into a panic). Sajid is promptly taken to the hospital to get circumcised. When Ella sees the pain her son has suffered due to the circumcision, the conflict between her love of her husband and her inability to stand up to him is readily visible. Left alone, the other children (barring Maneer) eat Haram foods, bacon and sausages, until Meenah sees their parents returning with Sajid. They try to hide the evidence, but Ella smells it—then keeps George away just long enough for them to finish clearing up.

Meanwhile, George arranges with  Mr Shah for next-in-line sons Abdul and Tariq to marry Nighat and Nushaaba, the ugly and overweight Shah daughters. George promises Mr Shah that the marriages will happen, even after he has seen photos of his prospective daughters-in-law (and just managed to discreetly hide his disgust). When George shares the plans with Ella, she openly disagrees, reminding him what happened with Nazir. George shuts down, insisting that Nazir is dead and the other children have no right whatsoever to disagree with him. Sajid happens to overhear this and he blurts it out during a fight with Tariq, Saleem, and Meenah.

Join now!

It seems that Tariq is already in a relationship with local white girl Stella, which they are keeping secret from George and Stella's racist grandfather. Despite the others' attempts to stop him, Tariq destroys the clothes and watches his father has traditionally bought for all his sons' weddings. When George sees the desecrated items, he assaults Maneer (the only one who follows George's strict rules) for refusing to name the culprit. Ella stands between them, greatly angering and confusing her husband, and says that his "pig-like" ignorance has alienated his children and caused them to be what he thinks of ...

This is a preview of the whole essay