India Masala

Bollywood and culture in an emerging India

Is “New York” a balanced film?


By international standards, Kabir Khan’s “New York” is an extraordinarily ordinary film. It hasn’t impressed critics abroad and reviews in international media haven’t been very charitable.

But even if you were to ignore the mediocre performances and shallow characterisation, “New York” does raise several issues about life for South Asian Americans after 9/11.

Khan says that while researching the film he discovered “a huge volume of prejudice” and at least 1,200 people from different nationalities who were detained on the “basis of suspicion alone”.

“New York” puts the spotlight on that prejudice through the story of Samir, an American of Indian origin who turns to terrorism after he is picked up by the FBI and brutally tortured for months only because he took some photographs of the twin towers for a school project.