The Taqwacores

"Very Good"

The Taqwacores Review


Set in a subculture most people would never guess exists, this entertaining comedy-drama shatters stereotypes in every scene. With so much ignorance and paranoia raging in the media, it's one of the year's most important films.

Yusef (Naderi) is a good Muslim who moves to Buffalo for university. There he moves into an Islamic flatshare, but his roommates aren't what he expects: devout Umar (Mann), punk rocker Jehangir (Rains), shirtless skater Ayyub (Eryaman), anarchic Fasiq (Tran) and burqa-wearing party girl Rabeya (DeWulf).

They all gather for prayers in the living room, which doubles as a mosque. And they're getting ready to host a weekend of Taqwacores, Muslim punk musicians from a movement that started on the West Coast.

As these people mix together, it's clear that the only thing they have in common is their strong Muslim faith, which each one expresses in a different way. This of course challenges Yusef to explore his own faith. Some of them have views on sex and drugs that are far from orthodox, but Yusef finds a way to fit in and even embrace the Taqwacore scene, which like the 70s punk scene is a confrontational reaction to the establishment (think stars of David instead of swastikas).

The film has a loose, scruffy tone that skilfully draws us in. The characters are lively and likeable, and they continually defy media portrayals of Islam that are based on fear-mongering, ignorance and bald-faced lies. These are heard coming from the TV and radio, although it's doubtful that these people would be able to stomach quite this much Fox News. And even people with an understanding of the variety of Islamic thought will be surprised by the filmmaker's observations.

The movie strains to be wacky and revolutionary, but it has a strong autobiographical quality to it in that this truth is much stranger than the fiction we have been led to believe. This is a group of Muslims who don't fit in anywhere, and they're frustrated that they're lumped in with a disenfranchised subculture. So their in-fighting and disagreements are extremely plausible. As Jehangir says, "Allah is too big for my religion to be small and narrow."



The Taqwacores

Facts and Figures

Genre: Dramas

Run time: 83 mins

In Theaters: Friday 22nd October 2010

Box Office USA: $11.2k

Distributed by: Strand Releasing

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 42%
Fresh: 10 Rotten: 14

IMDB: 6.0 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Eyad Zahra

Producer: Eyad Zahra

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Cars 3 Movie Review

Cars 3 Movie Review

It's been six years since the last Cars movie (there were two Planes movies in...

The Beguiled Movie Review

The Beguiled Movie Review

In her inimitable loose style, Sofia Coppola remakes the 1971 Clint Eastwood movie from a...

War for the Planet of the Apes Movie Review

War for the Planet of the Apes Movie Review

The surprisingly thoughtful prequel trilogy comes to a powerful conclusion with this robust, dramatic thriller,...

It Comes At Night Movie Review

It Comes At Night Movie Review

This sharply original horror film not only approaches its premise from an unexpected angle, but...

Okja Movie Review

Okja Movie Review

As Tilda Swinton reteams with her Snowpiercer director, Korea's Bong Joon Ho, it's perhaps unsurprising...

Spider-Man: Homecoming Movie Review

Spider-Man: Homecoming Movie Review

This may be the third reboot of this franchise in 15 years, risking audience exhaustion,...

Despicable Me 3 Movie Review

Despicable Me 3 Movie Review

Actually the fourth film in the series (don't forget the prequel Minions), this animated super-villain...

Advertisement
Baby Driver Movie Review

Baby Driver Movie Review

Wildly energetic and so cool it hurts, this action movie has been put together in...

All Eyez On Me Movie Review

All Eyez On Me Movie Review

There's a clear sense that this Tupac Shakur biopic is hoping to build on the...

Hampstead Movie Review

Hampstead Movie Review

Deliberately appealing to older audiences, this undemanding comedy-drama comes with a hint of social relevance...

The Book of Henry Movie Review

The Book of Henry Movie Review

Apparently, this offbeat script had been making the rounds in Hollywood for some 20 years...

Transformers: The Last Knight Movie Review

Transformers: The Last Knight Movie Review

With this fifth Transformers movie, it seems clear that Michael Bay is still trying to...

Churchill Movie Review

Churchill Movie Review

This drama about the iconic British prime minister tells a darkly personal story set over...

Gifted Movie Review

Gifted Movie Review

This is one of those films that dances right up to the edge of soapy...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.