And the award for the quintessential homonationalist film goes to…
I just finished watching a British film on Hulu called I Can’t Think Straight, about a London-based Palestinian woman who unexpectedly falls in love with a British Indian woman. But as I certainly expected, the film perpetuated every Orientalist trope in the book: the Third World is an unrepentant place for homosexuals; London is a gay metropolis, a beacon of freedom for all the world’s oppressed; Western (including Israel) conceptions of sexuality are inherently more progressive than those in the Third World.
And then there’s the use of two lighter-skinned American actresses to play the main characters, while their family members were dark-skinned and their ethnic features much more prominent.
So there was, in effect, a convergence of whiteness with progressiveness: The lighter, the more liberal; the darker, the more backwards. London was the backdrop for the former and Jordan, for the latter.
If you can ignore all that, it is an adorable film. Of course, I couldn’t. And now I’m pissed.