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Stray Dogs (2004)
"Sag-haye velgard" (original title)

 -  Drama  -  15 June 2005 (France)
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Reviews: 6 user | 13 critic

The story of survival of 2 children in post-Taliban Afghanistan. Their mother has been imprisoned for "adultery" and their father is in Guantanamo Bay.


(as Marzieh Meshkini)
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Credited cast:
Gol-Ghotai ...
Zahed ...
Agheleh Rezaie ...
The mother
Sohrab Akbari ...
Atef, the guard
Jamil Ghanazideh ...
Angry guardian
Agheleh Shamsollah ...
Female cell guardian
Razeddin Sayyar ...
Old crazy man
Maydeh Gol ...
Ghomri Valad Amir ...
Woman in a burqa
Shah Mahmood Golbahari ...
Rose seller
Emameddin Vakil ...
Cinema teller
Akhtar Abdolaziz ...
Cart driver
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Twiggy ...


The story of survival of 2 children in post-Taliban Afghanistan. Their mother has been imprisoned for "adultery" and their father is in Guantanamo Bay.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




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Release Date:

15 June 2005 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Chiens égarés  »

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[subtitled version]
Gol-Ghotai: Zahed, did you tell dad what mother said? Did you tell him?
Zahed: Yes.
Gol-Ghotai: Did he feel sorry for us?
Zahed: He said: "I went to fight in a Holy War. Your mother married again. Didn't she love me?"
Gol-Ghotai: She married again because we were hungry. Now that man is dead.
Zahed: Dad said that's good, and if mum dies, they can make love in Hell.
Gol-Ghotai: What's Hell?
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User Reviews

The dog was good
16 November 2011 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Scruffy little homeless urchins plus fluffy little lost dog = cuteness overload.

And yet by 20 minutes in i didn't feel engaged. The direction was too withdrawn, drama too withheld, the narrative lacking compulsion or even much purpose.

I guess I'm getting more resistant to Iranian films like this with wide-eyed and innocent cute kids. I can see the manipulation involved: pick street urchins up on location; they aren't going to act because they can't act; but you can model them on how to look sympathetically photogenic. The method of delivering script is feed each kid the line they have to say just before the camera is pointed at them; then splice together these separate takes of dialogue in the edit afterwards. This avoids the kids having to act with one another or react in close ups; you just train each kid to hold still the reaction shot you want. But these close ups get to look too (com) posed, repeating the same static expressions; because the kids aren't interiorising the feelings they're meant to be experiencing: they mimic pretty – as in cute – facades of sad or angry, rather than enact or dramatise them from within.

So mostly you get scenes in which the dialogue being spoken looks disconnected and sounds disengaged. Which may be why i felt similarly disconnected and disengaged.

Anyway, the little dog does lots of little barking on cue – with about the same level of subtlety as these kids delivering their dialogue.

I'm surprised how slight, even facile, i found this film considering how entranced I was by her (Marzieh Meshkini) first film The Day i Became a Woman.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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