The Infidel

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When Mahmud (Djalili) discovers that he's not only adopted but a Jew, his Muslim faith and sense of identity are thrown into flux.


A tricky proposition, this, being a comedy about a Muslim who, after his mother dies, discovers he was adopted and that he’s actually Jewish. At its inception it was considered a controversial property and initially struggled to find backing, but such is the likability of star Omid Djalili and the warmth of David Baddiel’s screenplay, compared to Chris Morris’ higher profile Four Lions, The Infidel is a relatively unthreatening prospect. Indeed, while the script pokes fun at both Muslim and Jewish customs, ultimately this gives context to themes of identity, family and friendship, as Djalili’s minicab driver Mahmud — a relaxed Muslim at best — struggles to make sense of who he is. An appealing supporting cast add to a quietly entertaining piece.

Funny and unthreatening, it's not subversive but it's plenty of fun.