The New York Times describes the just-released film A Jihad for Love as
a documentary on devout Muslims struggling with their homosexuality. Angst is the norm in this heartfelt debut by the filmmaker Parvez Sharma, whose documentary ranges from Johannesburg to Istanbul, from doubt to despair (with a happy detour among the drag queens of India). He does manage to locate a headstrong lesbian in Paris, albeit one whose face, like those of many of the subjects here, has been digitally blurred.
“If we are truly Muslims,” runs her contradictory lament, “we have no right to alter his creation.”
Mr. Sharma’s film emphasizes testimony over context to such a degree that it feels at first of little use to anyone except gay Muslims who might take comfort in knowing they’re not alone. But the documentary gains depth of feeling as it goes and even develops something of a nail-biting narrative as it follows a clique of Iranian men who flee to central Turkey in hopes of applying for political asylum in Canada.