In a reclaiming of the slur coolie, filmmaker Michelle Mohabeer’s creative essay documentary explores the experiences of queer Canadians from the Indo-Caribbean diaspora.
Beginning with Mohabeer’s personal experience, the documentary moves through a series of interviews with people from a wide variety of backgrounds. Instead of succumbing to pressure to find a shared narrative or common ground, the documentary embraces the complexities of how factors such as gender, age and mobility inform identity in nuanced ways. A powerful collection of testimonies, the film traces the intergenerational lives, histories, familial relations and sexualities of its interview subjects.
Speaking to the limits of identity and the violence of mainstream categorizations, Queer Coolie-tudes is a documentary that, using intimate testimonies and experimental visual exploration, illustrates the importance of not accepting erasure.