In Pakistan, punjabi dancers are often managed by criminals: violent mobsters, pimps, corrupt promoters. A new feature-length documentary, Zunn: Showgirls of Pakistan, follows three of those showgirls: Reema, a transwoman trying to retire; Afreen, a teenager who dreams of escaping Pakistan; and Nadia, a mentally ill dancer who lives with her promoter. Based on the slightly NSFW trailer—which features scenes of violence, desperation, striking costumes, and dancing—the movie looks pretty heart-rending; as someone who admittedly knows very little about this culture, I'm intrigued. The preview is also perfectly soundtracked by a song by classic singer Madam Noor Jahan, covered here by contemporary Pakistani-American band The Kominas—who were asked to recreate sexually charged punjabi music by the doc's director, Saad Khan. Listen below, and click here to donate to the film's post-production campaign.
Lead image: Vincenzo Floramo