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Womit haben wir das verdient? / What have we done to deserve this?

Now, one of the advantages of the free cinema ticket is that I can occasionally go, not to a film of choice, but to one that’s showing in the cinema nearest to where I am at the time. This can have marvellous results (Bombshell) or lead me to a terrible film (pick from several) but variety is the spice of life, hey

This one (title translates roughly as “What have we done to deserve this?”) is an Austrian comedy about the headscarf. And it could have been much, much worse. It shows sympathy for Nina, the 16-year old who converts to Islam, and pokes fun at the hypocrisy and latent racism of her liberal mother who is outraged and asks why she couldn’t at least have converted to Catholicism

Yet ultimately, it doesn’t show any real understanding why a woman would choose to wear a headscarf, and its ending shows the enemy to be some vague alliance of Nazis and all Muslim men, thus reinforcing the intolerance that its apparently trying to challenge.

Also for a comedy, it really isn’t very funny, although quite a few people in the audience at my showing found wearing a burka to be inherently funny, doubly so if its by a man. A Nuns on the Run de nos jours? (with an extra dose of light Islamophobia)

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