In the new Israeli film Out in the Dark, co-star Michael Aloni describes the two lead characters as “a modern Romeo & Juliet.”
Today, of course, that means they’re gay. And to make matters worse for their religious, ultra-conservative families, one lover is an Israeli Jew, the other Palestinian.
“It is a very emotional movie,” says Aloni, 28, a well-known Israeli actor in Tel Aviv. “It shows the political issues and brings out the true love story between the couple.”
Aloni, who plays Jewish attorney Roy Schaffer, and Nicholas Jacob, who co-stars as Palestinian student Nimr Mashrawi, are in South Florida this weekend for Out in the Dark‘s debut at Coral Gables Art Cinema. (The movie played one night last April at the 2013 Miami Gay & Lesbian Film Festival.)
“It’s one of the most realistic and emotionally intimate gay male love stories I’ve seen recently,” says filmmaker Robert Rosenberg, director of Coral Gables Art Cinema and founder of Miami’s gay film festival. “It’s anchored in a social and political reality that’s much broader than the simple boy-meets-boy love story.”
The lovers’ lives unravel because of intense parental pressure and the threat of public violence because of their different religious backgrounds.
“They can’t trust their families, they can’t trust their own governments,” Rosenberg says. “They are the anti-heroes against the world.”