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Category:    Home > Reviews > Documentary > Civil Rights > Homosexuality > Islam > A Jihad For Love (2007/Human Rights Watch/First Run DVD)

A Jihad For Love (2007/Human Rights Watch/First Run DVD)


Picture: C     Sound: C+     Extras: C+     Documentary: B



Parvez Sharma’s A Jihad For Love (2007) is a remarkable documentary about how homosexuality is being handled (not for the best) in increasingly radical Islamic territories in The Middle East.  Many gays and lesbians are interviewed from different countries about their situations.  Some live openly, some do not, while others have left for more tolerant countries.  Some people literally risked their lives to make this documentary and what is said and shown are landmark.


The idea of Jihad (and its stereotype, i.e. it automatically means holy war when it mean struggle) is brought up and is meant to challenge radical extremists who hide behind Islam.  It is also a portrait of the lives lived and another example of why rights should be a given for all and are unquestionable to enough of an extent that people are not killed or tortured for who they are.  In addition to that, it reminds us of the dark side of freer countries and why radicals only win when they go unchallenged.


The 1.78 X 1 color image is from several sources, often strained low-def digital, but that was often the only way to capture what was going on, so think of actual undercover footage and you get the idea.  The Dolby Digital 2.0 sound is sometimes stereo, but some of the location audio can be more like mono, but editing helps and it is the real audio.  Extras include new footage from Pakistan & Saudi Arabia, a director interview and behind the scenes featurette.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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