Nimr (Nicolas Jacob), a Palestinian psychology student who sneaks across the border to visit Tel Aviv’s gay bars, meets Roy (Michael Aloni), an Israeli lawyer. Their romance unfolds in intermittently thoughtful brushstrokes, and we get compelling peeks into their various spheres of influence: Nimr’s precarious West Bank home, Roy’s sleek office, the all-inclusive queer-nightlife scene. But about 45 minutes in, the film’s uneasy détente between subtlety and movie machinery fails outright, as heretofore shown-not-told themes are spelled out—“You forget where you live!” yell family members on both sides—and the paramours try to outrun violence and structural contrivance. A surprisingly open-ended deus ex mobster finale solves nothing.
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