In Jennifer Reeder’s new wave queer film, we see a couple of Americans with intersecting identities and their varying views on sexuality. Our first character is Zaynab (Fanzia Mirza), a cooler than cool but sheltered Muslim woman who is a lawyer for money but wrestles for interest. And, our second is Alma (Sari Sanchez), a Mexican woman with a free spirit. Both fall in love very quickly, but are divided on their views regarding coming out.
Zaynab’s widowed mother Parveen (Shabna Azmi) plays a stereotypical South Asian mother. Peering with binoculars outside her window looking for a suitable husband for her daughter. Arguably exaggerated, but solely for comedic value. Zaynab’s reluctance to come out to her mother creates a barrier between her and Alma, who tries to resolve the issue by giving Zaynab an ultimatum.
The film is multilingual as Zaynab speaks Urdu at home with her mother and Alma speaks Spanish with her family. But, both speak English with each other, sharing the experiences they’ve been through having to adjust to American norms. Both experiences are considerably different, and the audience sees this in the way they both approach the idea of coming out to their families.
Unlike many other films in the LGBT genre, this film isn’t about coming out. This is about the way people approach it, especially dependent on their intersectional identities as hyphenated Americans.
director JENNIFER REEDER
director of photography CHRISTOPHER REJANO
cast FAWZIA MIRZA, SHABANA AZMI, SARI SANCHEZ, AUDREY FRANCIS and CHARIN ALVAREZ
words PRIYESH PATEL
More to read