Scorn in the U.S.A.
The Reluctant Fundamentalist (2013)
Mira Nair's latest film, "The Reluctant Fundamentalist," is an investigation into Americanness wrapped in the veneer of a brash thriller, and — given recent events in domestic terrorism — eerily timely. Based on Mohsin Hamid's book of the same name, the story focuses on Changez (Riz Ahmed), a young man who is implicated in a high-profile kidnapping in Pakistan. Through conversations with a journalist, Changez retraces the steps that have led him from a sleek financial firm in New York to a radical professorship in Lahore. Jumping between moments of classic suspense and romance, Ms. Nair zeroes in on post-9/11 racism and its potentially radicalizing effects, namely on young men who feel increasingly alienated from the American dream — whatever that may be.