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What’s Love Got To Do With It? an enjoyable surprise packet

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What’s Love Got to Do With It?

  • Director: Shekhar Kapur
  • Cast: Lily James, Shazad Latif, Emma Thompson, Shabana Azmi, Sajal Ali, Asim Chaudhry
  • Genre: Romance
  • Running time: 1 hour 49 minutes

How do you find lasting love in today’s world?

That’s the main premise in the latest rom-com from the team who also produced Bridget Jones’s Diary and Love Actually.

Written by Jemima Khan, the ex-wife of cricketing legend and former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, What’s Love To Do With It? is a delightful offering in a sea of mundane movies at the moment.

And, while it’s not a biopic, the first-time screenwriter relies heavily on her past personal experiences – from a country she still adores – to entertain one and all.

For documentary filmmaker Zoe (Lily James), swiping right to find Mr Right has only delivered bad dates and funny anecdotes, much to her opinionated mother Cath’s (Emma Thompson) dismay.

But, for her childhood friend and neighbour Kazim (Shazad Latif), the answer is to follow his parents’ example and opt for an “assisted” marriage with a bright and beautiful bride from Pakistan.

As Zoe films his hopeful journey from London to Lahore to marry a stranger, chosen by his mother and father, she begins to wonder if she might have something to learn from a different approach to finding love. 

She grapples with her own complicated feelings about the subject, intimacy and commitment, leading her to challenge Kaz about his decision.

He, in turn, questions Zoe’s own choices – why does she “actively search out anyone who is wrong?”

As a 20-year-old Khan, herself, grew up in Pakistan – and lived with her ex-husband’s entire extended family – mother, father, sisters, their husbands and children – all in the one house.

So, she’s fully aware of the trials and tribulations of such a scenario.

She even witnessed wedding ceremonies of that nature and, incredibly, was asked to “arrange” future partnerships, too

And, while the film provides many thought-provoking moments, there’s more than enough humour to keep the storyline flowing and entertaining.

The leads, James and Latif, are perfect to portray Zoe and Kaz and their chemistry is warm and realistic.

It also helps that they’ve known each other for many, many years away from the big screen.

As for Thompson, what can you say?

She’s as brilliant as ever.

What’s Love Got To Do With It? is certainly an enjoyable surprise packet.

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