Five Favorite Films

Kumail Nanjiani's Five Favorite Films

The star of Silicon Valley and this week's The Big Sick talks about grownup problems and a moving animated film.

by | June 22, 2017 | Comments

(Photo by JA/Everett Collection)

He’s appeared in dozens of films and TV series, he’s hosted popular podcasts and a stand-up comedy show, and, as Pakistani programmer Dinesh Chugtai, he’s engaged in one of TV’s most hilarious rivalries with Martin Starr’s Gilfoyle on HBO’s Silicon Valley. This week, comedian-actor-writer Kumail Nanjiani gets to tell a more personal story in The Big Sick, an autobigraphical romantic comedy about the remarkable real-life courtship between him and his wife, Emily Gordon. Reviews for the Certified Fresh film have been outstanding, and Nanjiani took some time out of his busy schedule to give us his Five Favorite Films. Read on for the full list!

Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994) 96%

I would say Four Weddings and a Funeral, just because I have seen it the most times, and I just love it every time. It’s so funny and charming, and everybody’s great in it. It just looks good. It just feels good. I’d be lying if I put any other movie on top, because that’s the movie I’ve seen the most.

The Thing (1982) 83%

I love horror movies, and it was between The Thing and The Shining, but again, The Thing, I think, I’ve seen more times. Everybody’s great in it; it’s just a great ensemble. The creature design is awesome. It’s one of those movies that you can watch over and over.

Broadcast News (1987) 98%

That’s a movie that was really, really funny. It’s about grownups. It’s about grownups having grownup problems. There’s no bad guys in it. It’s really funny and really moving and really complicated and messy. Honestly, when we were writing The Big Sick, that was a movie that we used as a reference point, to be like, “If we can try and make a movie that’s similar to Broadcast News in tone, then at least we’re trying to the right kind of thing.”

The Iron Giant (1999) 96%

The Iron Giant is the movie that makes me cry the hardest. It’s just the best movie. It’s so good. It was sort of my test movie with girls — which is gross — but I would show it to them, and if they didn’t love it, I was like, “Alright, there’s something wrong with you.” The ending is great, when he says “Superman” is great, “I am not a gun.” I mean, so many moving moments. It’s just perfect.

Before Sunset (2004) 94%

– Before Trilogy

I’m cheating; I’m saying the Before trilogy. They’re just so real. You kind of check in with these characters, and each time, they’re sort of different, but it makes sense from the people that they were. You could see that these people, every ten years, would sort of become like this. Of those three, the one I’ve watched the most is Before Sunset. The ending of that movie just really gets me emotional every time. Oh my god, maybe I changed my mind. Maybe the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Who knows? It’s either the Before trilogy or the Lord of the Rings trilogy, and it’s different based on when you ask me during the day.


The Big Sick opens on Friday, June 23, in limited release.

Tag Cloud

documentaries Quiz renewed TV shows Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Podcast Funimation TV One Universal Best Actor rotten movies we love biography kaiju joker Super Bowl Comic-Con@Home 2021 IMDb TV game show DC Comics Tokyo Olympics die hard scorecard See It Skip It Superheroes Star Trek Mary poppins casting japan Cannes Binge Guide leaderboard PlayStation Neflix Emmy Nominations Marvel Rocky Legendary sopranos strong female leads Alien Family vs. animated CBS Watching Series Logo comiccon green book MCU natural history TNT WGN classics scary CNN GLAAD canceled MTV monster movies Toys BET Awards TCA Awards OneApp Best Actress Oscars 2017 crime Holidays The Purge romantic comedy war art house kids 2018 21st Century Fox BAFTA Extras Trivia blockbuster police drama Focus Features Ovation Esquire hist werewolf streaming movies based on movie doctor who dogs Trailer Marvel Television target scene in color TCA 2017 prank Lucasfilm Columbia Pictures Video Games TLC obi wan Christmas game of thrones Walt Disney Pictures 1990s Avengers critic resources Heroines Wes Anderson space Travel Channel true crime Polls and Games Disney Plus marvel cinematic universe Amazon Prime justice league 79th Golden Globes Awards Best and Worst SXSW 94th Oscars unscripted YouTube Premium CMT saw Instagram Live movie stand-up comedy summer TV Fox News king kong jamie lee curtis Best Picture SDCC Summer Grammys robots cops all-time Sundance TV Pixar Valentine's Day 4/20 obituary Biopics teaser Teen ABC Family Brie Larson Musical target blockbusters canceled TV shows comics series godzilla romance scene in color pirates of the caribbean Crunchyroll book adaptation Rock Star Wars Celebration Pride Month Spectrum Originals Nominations USA Network Film Nat Geo nature new star wars movies indie royal family Fall TV 20th Century Fox 99% comic book movie Disney+ Disney Plus 2019 APB GIFs Fargo Disney streaming service Spike Netflix Prime Video Pacific Islander TIFF Fantasy Black History Month Hallmark Christmas movies free movies cars Turner The Walt Disney Company First Reviews Native RT21 Hulu NBC BBC One independent name the review Calendar what to watch Reality 007 a nightmare on elm street comic BBC America spider-man fast and furious jurassic park quibi Chernobyl Shondaland diversity 71st Emmy Awards Anna Paquin Mystery Sony Pictures Schedule award winner universal monsters Television Critics Association Captain marvel binge Adult Swim docuseries debate cartoon video on demand directors spy thriller E3 deadpool Election marvel comics SundanceTV SXSW 2022 CBS All Access rt archives fresh Spring TV action-comedy Baby Yoda Hollywood Foreign Press Association Mary Tyler Moore medical drama Arrowverse Marvel Studios mcc mob cults adaptation dreamworks 2021 TruTV rom-coms batman Apple TV+ vampires The Witch 73rd Emmy Awards sequels olympics comic books Discovery Channel technology YouTube Red cancelled TV shows Universal Pictures 24 frames latino DC Universe discovery Hear Us Out french video finale Acorn TV travel new york critics slashers tv talk period drama MSNBC Sci-Fi Sundance Now ViacomCBS parents Epix rt labs critics edition Stephen King ABC Signature streaming Bravo christmas movies franchise Endgame WarnerMedia biopic south america Reality Competition hidden camera sports Character Guide boxing live action slasher spanish kong YouTube TV movies science fiction Opinion cinemax USA best foreign Action zombies Photos dexter crime thriller Amazon Studios twilight halloween 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards trailers laika anime VICE anthology rt labs dragons toronto FOX President hollywood black Interview high school First Look rotten Box Office RT History summer preview versus cancelled TV series italian Drama E! Trophy Talk harry potter Comic Book asian-american wonder woman halloween tv Peacock Television Academy Rocketman social media summer TV preview sequel Animation scary movies Martial Arts Red Carpet Disney Channel 45 singing competition reviews Black Mirror Food Network ratings stop motion miniseries FX king arthur OWN australia Pop TV A&E spider-verse mission: impossible cats satire Rom-Com sag awards concert posters GoT NBA crossover MGM Cosplay TV renewals Paramount Pictures scene in color series Pirates Tomatazos Apple TV Plus dark Awards Tour theme song transformers Tags: Comedy feel good Exclusive Video Tubi dramedy psychological thriller movies LGBT IFC Films A24 American Society of Cinematographers Nickelodeon Indigenous San Diego Comic-Con festivals gangster comedies Winners Crackle nfl 93rd Oscars films hispanic heritage month Shudder historical drama Mary Poppins Returns talk show composers CW Seed dceu Thanksgiving lord of the rings Women's History Month DirecTV Writers Guild of America adenture news The Arrangement worst movies Freeform spanish language basketball Paramount Network scene in color film series revenge blaxploitation psycho sitcom El Rey book thriller political drama Comics on TV Elton John TCM TBS aliens The CW Countdown screenings Apple Ghostbusters AMC Plus Cartoon Network japanese nbcuniversal DC streaming service Fox Searchlight Infographic Dark Horse Comics Marathons indiana jones Comedy Winter TV ESPN serial killer Vudu hispanic Lionsgate worst football golden globes criterion The Walking Dead Syfy stoner 90s TCA Mudbound Mindy Kaling Britbox adventure broadcast live event TV Creative Arts Emmys Showtime TV Land spain Broadway reboot Awards 2016 Superheroe Year in Review ID Masterpiece ABC VH1 comic book movies Comedy Central cancelled television docudrama child's play superhero Premiere Dates mutant PaleyFest HFPA ghosts Hallmark ITV trophy Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Film Festival supernatural Certified Fresh History HBO Disney chucky Best Director Netflix Christmas movies richard e. Grant Pop Horror Image Comics remakes Holiday FXX X-Men HBO Go Music young adult Ellie Kemper streamig Oscar Country HBO Max documentary venice Geeked Week Sundance aapi Amazon Prime Video Sony heist movie Western elevated horror spinoff Warner Bros. screen actors guild Song of Ice and Fire IFC television Pet Sematary genre emmy awards new zealand legend festival New York Comic Con toy story interviews LGBTQ National Geographic Paramount Emmys Turner Classic Movies facebook know your critic zero dark thirty BET dc Starz politics Lifetime FX on Hulu 72 Emmy Awards archives Star Wars cooking children's TV black comedy Musicals international telelvision disaster razzies superman breaking bad Amazon AMC Paramount Plus Sneak Peek Kids & Family Academy Awards boxoffice NYCC Tumblr PBS VOD YA Set visit BBC Tarantino 2015 mockumentary South by Southwest Film Festival popular Lifetime Christmas movies The Academy crime drama golden globe awards suspense DGA james bond Classic Film 2020 zombie TCA Winter 2020 witnail cancelled women