Itinerant Kurdish teachers, carrying blackboards on their backs, look for students in the hills and villages of Iran, near the Iraqi border during the Iran-Iraq war. Said falls in with a ... See full summary »
Haji is severely traumatized by the war with Iraq. Back from the front, he's unable to adapt to civilian life. Despite family opposition, his fiancée stands by him as together they ... See full summary »
Consisting of three separate stories, the director explores "Man" as a theme: birth, life and death, to present a sometimes comic, sometimes tragic portrait of life at the bottom of the ... See full summary »
Nogreh is a young Afghani woman living with her father and her sister-in-law, Leylomah, whose husband, Akhtar, is missing. Beyond the issue of Akhtar, Leylomah is most concerned with how to... See full summary »
A film comprised of three interconnected vignettes that depict women at three stages of life in Iran. The first part centers on a young girl on her ninth birthday who is told that she can ... See full summary »
Pretending to be Mohsen Makhmalbaf making his next movie, Hossain Sabzian enters the home of a well-to-do family in Tehran, promising it a prominent part in his next movie. The actual ... See full summary »
Makhmalbaf puts an advertisement in the papers calling for an open casting for his next movie. However when hundreds of people show up, he decides to make a movie about the casting and the ... See full summary »
Part one: A brown-haired man finds out that his wife cheats on him with a blonde-haired man. He kills his rival and is condemned to the capital punishment. Gazale takes her own life. Part ... See full summary »
Nafas is a reporter who was born in Afghanistan, but fled with her family to Canada when she was a child. However, her sister wasn't so lucky; she lost her legs to a land mine while young, and when Nafas and her family left the country, her sister was accidentally left behind. Nafas receives a letter from her sister announcing that she's decided to commit suicide during the final eclipse before the dawn of the 21st century; desperate to spare her sister's life, Nafas makes haste to Afghanistan, where she joins a caravan of refugees who, for a variety of reasons, are returning to the war-torn nation. As Nafas searches for her sister, she soon gets a clear and disturbing portrait of the toll the Taliban regime has taken upon its people. Written by
I was moved by the beauty brought to a situation of suffering and tragedy. As our protagonist struggles to find her sister, the horrors of postwar Afghanistan are revealed through simple encounters with a variety of people with struggles of their own. The pacing, which may seem tedious to folks used to fast action, allows a lyrical visual beauty to arise where another filmmaker may have shown chaos. In turn, this lyrical beauty creates a stillness where compassion begins and grows. What was distant & abstract becomes close & personal. We're shown a perspective on war that is at once starkly simple and deeply caring.
I also enjoyed the taste of Persian culture. The legacy of Hafiz, Rumi & other great Persian poets flavors the vivid poetics of Makhmalbaf's cinematography, dialog, and plot structure. Quite a taut alternative to our American viewpoint.
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