My hubby got me it, as I am going through a massive phase of watching 'foreign' films. I've seen it twice now, the second time without subtitles. Although I struggled to understand what was said the second time, I felt I enjoyed it more. I even got teary in parts, although I'd already seen it!
It's actually very good, surprised I'm saying this. It shows how the danger of the lack of religious knowledge can really harm someone, and how easy it is therefore to be
misguided by people who think they have so much religious knowledge but twist it to suit themselves. It shows the struggle between those who choose a more extreme/hardcore interpretation of Islaam, and ignore its beauty and that the Prophet advised us to take the middle ground and not make the religion hard for ourselves, and there are so many ahadeeth that such people choose to ignore to propogate their own views.
It deals with current relevant issues, which I don't want to give away for those who want to see it, but there's a theme of marriage which runs very strongly in the movie, and you see it in 3 different cases: Mary's dad's views and current situation, Maryam's own situation, and that of Mansoor and Janie.
I must say that I really liked Mansoor (apart from when he offers Janie, or however you spell her name, the bottle of wine/alcohol). He has some really good lines I thought. I really disliked the actions of his brother the first time I saw the movie, because I thought he really should have known better than to let himself be led to do blatantly wrong actions, though you do see at times how he struggles, as morally he sees that what he might be doing is not right, and yeah, at the the end, he is incredibly remorseful. At the time though, I felt that the fate that awaited Mansoor should really have been handed out to his brother. I felt very very sad for Mansoor at the end, but although his letter to Janie was a bit cheesy, I'm really glad they put it in. The second time I watched the movie, I did have more sympathy for his brother and realise how difficult it must be to not be brainwashed like that if you don't know any better, and this time his character appealed more to me.
There is a part where Maryam is escaping and the bit when she covers her face and is slumped (I'm trying hard not to give things away as I hate it when people do that!) moved me.
I really liked how they incorporated 3 different languages in the movie, and it was really nice to get a glimpse in to that particular village life where Maryam is taken to (forgot it's name, but it's meant to be on the border of Pakistan and Afghanistan).
The only annoying thing in the movie is Mary/Maryam's accent. But I take it she isn't actually British born, like they try to make it out in the movie, and her actual language is urdu as she speaks it so well. Her father is plain evil!
The other thing I feel they never properly addressed was the whole music issue. You have one bloke saying it's wrong, and another guy mentioning about Prophet Dawud's voice and the hadeeth of the Ansar singing. However, I don't believe this answered anything as his arguments referred to the 'voice' or singing, but not music itself.
The adhaan scene at the end is really nice, though it's about the 2 opposing sides!
Anyways, I've realised there's so much more I can say! But hopefully this will suffice. Next movie I'll be seeing insha'Allaah is Paradise Now, so if anyone's seen it, pls don't tell me yet what happens!