Signature Move

A secret new romance with Alma forces Zaynab to confront her complicated relationship with her recently widowed mother. In this coming-of-age Muslim melodrama, Zaynab copes by taking up Lucha-style wrestling.


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  • ★★★★ review by Siân on Letterboxd

    [When you watch festival screeners for an interview and forget to log 'em.]

    "On the surface, Signature Move is a coming-of-age romantic comedy. Zaynab, a young Muslim woman, is living with her recently widowed mother while attempting to keep details of her life from her, like her sexuality and newfound interest in luchadora-style wrestling. She meets Alma by chance at a bar one night and… you know how it goes.

    Except when you watch Signature Move, you very quickly realize that you are watching something incredibly special. Special not because it’s a love story between a queer Muslim woman and Mexican woman and not even because of the wrestling. What makes this movie special is how relatable it is, no matter what your background or orientation might be. We’ve all struggled with finding ourselves and being comfortable with who we are; we’ve all met that person who rocks our damn world; we’ve all tried to figure out how our parents fit into our lives as we grow.

    Most of all, Signature Move is a story of women and their strength—figurative and in-a-luchadora-mask literal."

    Read my interview with filmmaker Jennifer Reader HERE.

  • ★★★½ review by Nick Isaac on Letterboxd

    A fusion burrito of everything that makes America great - Everything your Trump voting uncle would hate.

    See my full SXSW review over at Talk Film Society.

    SXSW 2017: Signature Move

  • ★★★½ review by Scott on Letterboxd

    Incredibly charming romantic comedy about two POC queer women falling for each other, while the one who's Pakistani and Muslim figures out how to deal with how much her mom knows about her personal life. Some dialogue is a little too on the nose, but the romantic chemistry is very sweet and the actress playing the mom does show an inner complexity which makes it more than just a stock villain. And there's Mexican luchadore wrestling. Whaddya need, a road map?

  • ★★★½ review by Erika Sorensen on Letterboxd

    MSPIFF 2017 #12

    A bit amateurish and a bit cliche but all the ways it's not cliche and it's raw, charismatic charm won me over. I mean, have you ever seen a movie about a gay Pakistani-American woman who takes up Mexican wrestling because of a girl? I think this might be the only one. And Fawzia Mirza (as seen in Her Story!!!) in the lead role is so good. I could watch an entire Netflix comedy show about her gay adventures. Please, universe, you owe us all.

  • ★★★★★ review by Anglor B on Letterboxd

    Another movie I didn't know I needed. The mother daughter dynamics and contrast. The variations on coming out. And of course the wrestling. Great humour, great touching moments, great music, and great love.

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