It’s easy to see why No Hard Feelings won this year’s Teddy, the award for best LGBT film at the Berlin Film Festival. Smart and sexy, impassioned and playful, globally minded but dealing with matters of the heart, the film contains all the ingredients of a real festival smash.
As a punishment for shoplifting, Parvis (Benjamin Radjaipour) must perform community service as a Farsi translator at a refugee shelter. Born in Germany to Iranian exiles, Parvis is not shy about his queerness. He’s always hitting the clubs and setting selfie thirst traps. But there’s as much awkwardness as intrigue when he befriends Iranian shelter residents, brother and sister Amon (Eidin Jalali) and Banafshe (Banafshe Hourmazdi), who are waiting to find out if they have a future in Germany.
The partly autobiographical world that director Faraz Shariat creates for his young cast is engrossingly magical and yet utterly believable, handling themes of displacement, migration, assimilation and racism with humour and hope.