7.4/10
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7 user 15 critic

Bicycleran (1989)

The wife of Nasim, an Afghan immigrant in Iran, is gravely ill. He needs money to pay for her care, but his day labor digging wells does not pay enough. A friend connects Nasim to a two-bit... See full summary »

Director:

Mohsen Makhmalbaf
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2 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Mahshid Afsharzadeh Mahshid Afsharzadeh ... Gypsy Woman
Firouz Kiani Firouz Kiani ... Motorcyclist
Samira Makhmalbaf
Mohammad Reza Maleki Mohammad Reza Maleki ... Jomeh
Esmail Soltanian Esmail Soltanian ... Showman
Moharram Zaynalzadeh Moharram Zaynalzadeh ... Nasim
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Storyline

The wife of Nasim, an Afghan immigrant in Iran, is gravely ill. He needs money to pay for her care, but his day labor digging wells does not pay enough. A friend connects Nasim to a two-bit promoter who sells tickets to watch Nasim ride a bicycle continuously for a week. The promoter brings in sick and aged spectators, haranguing them to find hope in Nasim's strength. Aided by his son, who feeds him as he rides, Nasim grinds out the days and shivering nights. Local officials believe this may be a plot and Nasim may be a spy; they try to sabotage him as do those who bet he won't finish the week. Will desperation alone get Nasim the money? Is any triumph an illusion? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

money | immigrant | afghan | iran | bicycle | See All (32) »

Genres:

Drama

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Details

Official Sites:

sourehcinema

Country:

Iran

Language:

Persian

Release Date:

9 September 1998 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Docharkheh Savar See more »

Filming Locations:

Iran

Company Credits

Production Co:

Bonyad Mostazafan See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Connections

Features They Shoot Horses, Don't They? (1969) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Sympathy
28 January 2014 | by gavin6942See all my reviews

The wife of Nasim, an Afghan immigrant in Iran, is gravely ill. He needs money to pay for her care, but his day labor digging wells does not pay enough. A friend connects Nasim to a two-bit promoter who sells tickets to watch Nasim ride a bicycle continuously for a week.

What strikes me most about this film is not even the film itself, which has many good qualities. It is the world that is being filmed. With the Middle East constantly in the news, the region is a common focus of American movies. But seeing the people through the eyes of a director who lives there... it is a completely different experience.

One scholar has analyzed the film as an allegory which parallels the exploitation that Afghan refugees suffer from in Iran and from which they are unable to escape. I do not know enough to comment on this, though it is interesting to note that Mohsen Makhmalbaf, although Iranian, does seem to have a preoccupation with the Afghan people.


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