A powerful, original, and hilariously irreverent story of punk Islam in the USA and the discovery of oneself within the confines of religion.A powerful, original, and hilariously irreverent story of punk Islam in the USA and the discovery of oneself within the confines of religion.A powerful, original, and hilariously irreverent story of punk Islam in the USA and the discovery of oneself within the confines of religion.
(Most of) these punk rockers really push the ideals of don't be who your parents want you to be or who society wants you to be or what the Qur'an tells you to be - be who you want to be. That's kind of cliché. I've seen that way too many times. But the film does keep it fresh by having the Taqwacores rebel in unorthodox ways. Like Rabiya who wears a full burqa covering every inch of her body down to her fingers. She doesn't do it out of devotion to Allah or Islam. She does it to make a statement. I could (sort of) relate to that. If you meet someone who doesn't drink or smoke, or someone who's still a virgin, you might assume they're a "good girl / good boy" who is a goody-two-shoes and plays it straight and doesn't dare to embrace who they want to be inside. But isn't it possible they've made a conscious choice - not because they think this is wrong - but because they think they don't need to? Because they're secure in their decisions? Don't get me wrong, I don't think the Taqwacores are secure in their decisions. In fact, beneath all that confident protesting against societal norms, there is a highly veiled layer of deep insecurity. At least that's what I felt. I got that vibe especially from Jehangir. And did I love that character to shreds! I love the message he sends out at the end - who are the Taqwacores to exclude Taqwacores who are "different" when Taqwacores themselves are excluded by other punks because they are "different". People always have the tendency to segregate and to exclude those who are "different". Even those who are excluded themselves. For example, homosexuals might be more accepted by the wider population these days, but bisexuals and asexuals are still weird and even homosexuals find them weird. This might be a bit of a generalization and I may not have a large enough sample to make these generalizations.
I liked that this film led me to think outside the scope of the film, but I kind of wish it did address some of these ideas on its own.
- Mar 16, 2013