An elderly couple go about their routine of cleaning their gabbeh (a intricately-designed rug), while bickering gently with each other. Magically, a young woman appears, helping the two clean the rug. This young woman belongs to the clan whose history is depicted in the design of the gabbeh, and the rug recounts the story of the courtship of the young woman by a stranger from the clan.Written by
Mike Myers <email@example.com>
Is it racist to insist that this is the most beautiful film I have ever seen? I say racist, because much of what is 'merely' beautiful to me is part of a rich symbolic texture I couldn't always get; concentrating on aesthetics may seem to rob a film of its political force. That it has such force is proven by its being banned in its country of origin - Makhmalbaf's hiding behind allegory cannot disguise his impassioned analysis of poverty, the oppressiveness of tradition or the loneliness of women in a patriarchal society. This is a film full of nature's marvel, yet shows how 'nature' is often used to justify social repression - as the teacher's lesson demonstrates, if the creation of the gabbeh (an ornamental, narrative carpet) is art in nature's image, than nature (and the rules it inspires) is merely a recreation of ours.
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