6.6/10
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A Jihad for Love (2007)

Unrated | | Documentary | 21 May 2008 (USA)
A documentary on gay, lesbian, and transgender Muslims across the Muslim and Western worlds.

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Writer:

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Muhsin Hendricks ...
A.K. Hoosen ...
Himself (as Mufti A.K. Hoosen)
Mazen ...
Himself
...
Himself
Sana ...
Herself
Maryam ...
Herself
Maha ...
Herself
Amir ...
Himself
Arsham Parsi ...
Himself
Payam ...
Himself
Mojtaba ...
Himself
Ferda ...
Herself
Kiymet ...
Herself
Qasim ...
Himself
Syed Kalbe Jawad ...
Himself
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Storyline

n a time, when Islam is under tremendous attack-from within and without-'A Jihadfor Love' is a daring documentary-filmed in twelve countries and nine languages. Muslim gay filmmaker Parvez Sharma has gone where the silence is strongest, filming with great risk in nations where government permission to make this film was not an option. A Jihad for Love is the first-ever feature-length documentary to explore the complex global intersections of Islam and homosexuality. With unprecedented access and depth, Sharma brings to light the hidden lives of gay and lesbian Muslims from countries like Iran, Pakistan, Egypt, Turkey, France, India, and South Africa. The majority of gay and lesbian Muslims must travel a lonely and often dangerous road. In many nations with a Muslim majority, laws based on Quranic interpretations are enforced by authorities to monitor, entrap, imprison, torture and even execute homosexuals. Even for those who migrate to Europe or North America and adopt Western ... Written by Parvez Sharma

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Islam Like You've Never Seen It

Genres:

Documentary

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Language:

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Release Date:

21 May 2008 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

In the Name of Allah  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$13,418, 25 May 2008, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$105,033, 21 September 2008
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film used covered faces and silhouettes in order to protect the safety of sources whose lives would have been in danger had their identities been revealed. See more »

Quotes

[last lines]
Muhsin Hendricks: Allah says in the Qu'ran: "Do not despair of the mercy of God, because God, to you, is most merciful."
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User Reviews

 
Muslim homosexuals long, arduous struggle for acceptance by co-religionists
25 October 2015 | by See all my reviews

The documentary film maker Pervez Sharma is a devout Muslim and a fighter for acceptance of homosexuals within the Ummah or the broad global community of followers of the third branch of the Abrahamic religions. In 'A Jihad for Love' he presents us with a palette of Muslim gays and lesbians who crave acceptance as true believers in Islam. They pray, they observe rituals, they fast. In other words they try to follow the teachings of the Koran and its interpretations found in the Hadith, They in many respects differ little from their fellow believers, but in whom they choose to love. And in this choice or biologically determined preference, they are considered beyond the pale by the Ulema or scholars of sacred theology and law. As in Christianity and Judaism, the injunction of loving the same sex, is found in the story of Sodom and Gemorrah that God destroyed, and commented on over the centuries in the Hadiths. Sharma takes us from South Africa to Egypt to Iran and Turkey, as his inquiring camera lets persecuted gays to speak for themselves as believers in a religion that in certain countries might have them stoned to death or beheaded. As Sharma sees it, jihad is a personal inner struggle of the soul. But say jihad today and what comes to mind is the mindless terrorism that uses religion to disguise an intense political struggle against the West or for the soul of Islam that Islamic evangelists seek to bring Islam to the purity it was during the days of the Prophet Muhammed. Luckily for the imam from South Africa, his country protects him for discrimination on the basis of sexual preference. In Egypt, we see the back of a young man whipped with 100 lashes and gang raped in a year's imprisonment, before escaping to Paris In Iran, the plight of four young men who seek asylum in Turkey on the way to the safety of Canada. Turkey has no law against homosexuality nor same sex complements, as two devout lesbians show us. 'A Jihad for Love' shows us that for loving another of the same sex, Muslim gays, as true believers, have to struggle for the love that dares not call its name. Most Muslim gays escape to more welcome lands or get married or live in the shadows, owing to religious traditions that are quick to condemn them. And yet, as the documentary make clear the mothers of the gays do not reject them, but fear for their well being. Even the South African imam who married and fathered three children has a good relationship with his wife (ex-wife?) and his children who know how and what he is. Anyone who has read Andre Gide or Oscar Wilde or Jane and Paul Bowles or JR Ackerley or EM Forster learns how welcoming is the Islam to gays. And inspire of the religious and legal prohibition banning homosexuality, it is widely practiced in Muslim and Arab countries, owing to the separation of the sexes early on. In Afghanistan, even the Taliban perform it in the maintaining the centuries old custom of 'bacha bazi', the use of young boys as sexual objects. For reference, look at 'The Kite Runner'. 'A Jihad for Love' is a testimonial of gay believers in Islam who won't abandon their religion and are willing to go through physical and psychological injury not to abandon the religion of their forefathers. And it's to Sharma's credit, as a fierce gay Muslim, that he has brought this struggle to the screen


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