Ararat (2002)

R  |   |  Drama, War  |  6 December 2002 (USA)
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Interrogated by a customs officer, a young man recounts how his life was changed during the making of a film about the Armenian genocide.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Setta Keshishian ...
Dinner Guest / Wailing Mother
Shant Srabian ...
Dinner Guest #3 / Doctor #1
Ali / Jevdet Bay
Brent Carver ...
Christie MacFadyen ...
Dawn Roach ...
Customs Officer
Lousnak Abdalian ...
Gorky's Mother


People tell stories. In Toronto, an art historian lectures on Arshile Gorky (1904?-1948), an Armenian painter who lived through the genocide in Turkey in 1915. A director invites the historian to help him include Gorky's story in a film about the genocide and Turkish assault on the town of Van. The historian's family is under stress: her son is in love with his step-sister, who blames the historian for the death of her father. The daughter wants to revisit her father's death and change that story. An aging customs agent tells his son about his long interview with the historian's son, who has returned from Turkey with canisters of film. Parents and children. All the stories connect. Written by <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


In a world full of denial, how do you determine who's telling the truth? See more »


Drama | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, sexuality/nudity and language | See all certifications »


Official Sites:

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Release Date:

6 December 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ararát  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$211,130 (USA) (15 November 2002)


$1,554,566 (USA) (24 January 2003)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The Italian release of this film was intended to be on April 24th 2003. However, its showing was unexpectedly banned by Italian authorities a day before the planned release, with the authorities explaining that the film's distributor had failed to submit in time the application to obtain the required censorship certificate. See more »


Rouben: Every scene in this film is based on this document.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Closing disclaimers: 1) The historical events in this film have been substantiated by holocaust scholars, national archives, and eyewitness accounts, including that of Clarence Ussher. 2) To this day, Turkey continues to deny the Armenian Genocide of 1915. See more »


Referenced in Film Geek (2005) See more »


Written by Gord Downie (as Gordon Downie) and Atom Egoyan
Performed by Gord Downie (as Gordon Downie)
From the album "Coke Machine Glow"
Courtesy of Wiener Art Records - copyright 2000
Copyright 2000 - Wiener Art (SOCAN)/Egoyan Ego Film Arts (SOCAN)
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User Reviews

A film within a film, IMO, Egoyan's best work.
28 May 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I have seen other film by Atom Egoyan. I respect him as an artist.

This film, Ararat, is lovingly made and very sensitive to a horrid subject. I found the acting very good, especially that by Christopher Plummer and David Alpay. I am shocked to see how limited the release was in the U.S. 6 screens, in the whole country? This film deserves far better treatment.

I am also dismayed by the official IMDb blurb "Interrogated by a customs officer, a young man recounts how his life was changed during the making of a film about the Armenian genocide claims." Very good until the last word, "claims." Political correctness has no such place here. The only country in the world which continues to deny the Armenian Holocaust is Turkey.

6 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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