Submitted by Evan B

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Mina and Demetrius decide to run away together and try and make their relationship work. Jay returns to Uganda and, in so doing, realizes that his true home is with his family and decides to return to the United States permanently.

Long Ending:
Idi Amin takes power in Uganda and orders the removal of all the foreigners – particularly Asians – that he claims have stolen the country’s wealth and resources. Jay (Roshan Seth) is a Ugandan-born man of Indian heritage and speaks out against Amin’s directive. As a result of his protest, Jay’s best friend Okelo (Konga Mbandu) urges Jay to leave Uganda, saying that the country is now only for Black people. Although Okelo says this because he knows his friend is in danger for speaking out, Jay believes his friend is being racist and refuses to say good bye to him. Jay and his family – wife Kinnu (Sharmila Tagore) and young daughter Mina – abandon their home and possessions and flee to Mississippi in the United States.

Decades pass and Mina (Sarita Choudhury) is a young adult. She and her family live with their relatives in a motel that her uncle owns, with Mina working as a maid. Jay has never gotten over his forced removal from Uganda and spends his days writing legal petitions to the government in hopes they will allow him to return and reclaim his home. Kinnu runs a liquor store and worries about Mina’s lack of ambition.

Mina strikes up a friendship with an African-American man named Demetrius (Denzel Washington) and the two soon begin dating in secret. They bond over their similarities and shared otherness (Mina is an Indian-American woman who has never been to India, Demetrius an African-American who has never been to Africa). Demetrius started a carpet-cleaning business with his best friend Tyrone (Charles S. Dutton) and most of his clients are Indian. Although Demetrius is able to introduce Mina to her family, she is unable to do the same due to her family’s traditional notions of romance and her family’s desire for her to date Indian men. Mina also has to deal with insensitive and ignorant statements from Demetrius’ family and friends. And they both face discrimination from white people. Mina learns that Demetrius is supporting his widowed father and immature brother. Meanwhile, the new Ugandan government (with Idi Amin no longer in power) writes a letter to Jay honoring his request to return and officially petition for the restoration of his property.

Some of Mina’s relatives discover her relationship when they see her and Demetrius on a date in a nearby town. Mina’s cousin gets in a fight with Demetrius over him taking Mina’s “honor” and Demetrius and Mina end up getting arrested. As a result of the scandal, Demetrius’ Indian clients terminate his services and he defaults on paying his business loans (and Tyrone even moves away due to the likelihood their business will fail). A scorned Demetrius is confronted by Jay (whose negative feelings towards Demetrius largely are due to his lingering bitterness towards his perceived betrayal by Okelo) and Jay orders him to stay away from Mina. To exact revenge, Demetrius sues Mina’s cousin (over a car crash they were in earlier). The cousin angrily asks Jay to leave, and so Jay decides to uproot his family and move back to Uganda.

Mina escapes from her home and finds Demetrius. Both admit that they still love each other and they would prefer to strike out on their own and see what future they can build together rather than be held back by their familial obligations. Demetrius gets his father’s blessing (who also notes that Demetrius leaving could force his younger brother to act more like an adult) and Mina gets Kinnu’s blessing. The two then leave Mississippi together. Kinnu then tells Jay that she views America as her home, but encourages him to return to Uganda and see how he feels about it after all these years. If he still views it as home, she will move back there with him. Before he leaves, Jay recalls that after his interview criticizing Idi Amin, he’d been jailed and Okelo used his own fortune to bribe the police to let Jay out. Finally coming to terms with the fact that Okelo only acted to protect Jay and his family, Jay returns to Uganda.

In Uganda, Jay learns that Okelo has died (he “disappeared” after criticizing Idi Amin once Jay left) and mourns that he never made up with his best friend. This experience helps Jay realize that his home is with his family, not with a nation. He writes to his wife that he will return permanently to the US (and implies he will accept Mina’s decisions). The film ends with Mina and Demetrius in a happy embrace.

01 hours 58 minutes