Tuesday, August 11th, 2015

Peace After Marriage

Arafat is a 30 year-old struggling actor who is still living at home in Brooklyn with his conservative Arab parents. They are determined for him to get married but he is just desperate to get laid. They drag him around to all their Palestinian friends who are trying to palm their singularly unattractive daughters off in a traditional marriage, whilst he just wants to stay in his room and beat off to his massive collection of porn. They even drag him back to Palestine to see if they can fix him up with a local girl, but Arafat still wants to hold out until he can find his own love match.
Meanwhile he knows that he has to get his porn obsession under control so he joins a Sexual Compulsive Support Group where Kenny is assigned as his ‘mentor’. Kenny doesn’t actually seem to have many bright ideas but he does make a suggestion as to how Arafat can neatly solve nearly all his problems in one go.  As he is an American citizen there are women who would pay him to get married and as they would have to live together to convince the INS, he would not only could get to move out of his parents apartment, but his ‘bride’ would probably put out too. Arafat agrees to the idea and when he sees how pretty his future ‘wife’ he thinks he has struck gold except for one rather major obstacle. Michaela is not only Jewish but is Israeli which ‘makes her extra Jewish’ he claims.  She is also not to keen to be having a Palestinian Arab as her husband but as her boyfriend is refusing to step up the plate she has little choice if she wants to remain living in the US.
It’s fairly obvious how this is going to pan out even after Arafat’s family call on their Imam to help them stage an ‘intervention’ to rescue their son, but the ‘journey’ to it’s inevitable ending is still very funny nevertheless with some good laugh-out-loud one liners. It’s all the work of a stand up comic Ghazi Albuliwi who is the movie’s writer, director and star, and he performs all his roles extremely well in what is obviously a real labor of love. Albuliwi has occasionally been dubbed a Muslim Woody Allen and he certainly has a very quick wit and a natural talent for what is very much a New York story.
He has cast it well with the surprising (and very welcome) inclusion of talented Israeli actress Hiam Abbass, best known for her serious roles in movies such as ‘The Visitor’ and ‘Lemon Tree’ playing comedy for a change.
I guess the movie has even more resonance if you are either an Arab or an Israeli Jew (it had it’s World Premiere in The Abu Dhabi Film Festival followed by a Screening in Jerusalem) and the very idea of a mixed marriage is not something you would not normally want to think about.  Even if you are not, then its a delightfully entertaining romantic comedy that will put a big smile on your face. 

Posted by queerguru  at  00:00


Genres:  rom-com

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