Brick Lane 

Nazneen, a young woman from Bangladesh, is transplanted unwillingly to London and is estranged from her rural home, beloved sister and much older bear of a husband. As the rapid­ly changing post-9/11 racial politics of England take shape around her dingy housing estate, a handsome young convert to radical Islam (Christopher Simpson) rocks Nazneen's world. With a limited budget, Gavron has had to prune Ali's huge cast of Dickensian supporting characters; in the process, she has also replaced the novel's teeming vitality and tragicomic drive with a prettified lyricism that drags the story down. Even so, British director Sarah Gavron's adaptation of Monica Ali's great big treat of a 2003 novel is absorbing enough, moving enough and visually attractive enough to provide a perfectly acceptable night at the movies.

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