It's been months since Jafar Panahi, stuck in jail, has been awaiting a verdict by the appeals court. By depicting a day in his life, Panahi and Mojtaba Mirtahmasb try to portray the deprivations looming in contemporary Iranian cinema.
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Mina Mohammad Khani,
Three actresses at different stages of their career. One from before the 1979 Islamic Revolution, one popular star of today known throughout the country and a young girl longing to attend a drama conservatory.
When you are a filmmaker and you are not allowed to direct movies any more, you have to retrain. So why not become a taxi driver? Or better, why not pretend you are a taxi driver and make a film despite everything? This is what Jafar Panahi has done. Now he invites you to get into his cab for the price of a cinema ticket, to ride through the streets of Tehran and discover its people in the persons of his various passengers.Written by
This is one of the unique film, and the filmmaking I have seen. It is a docudrama, starred and directed by Jafar Panahi. It is my first film of his and I'm very impressed. I also learnt he was banned from making movies and to leave the country since last 5 years. But he took all the legal route possible to keep making them, and this movie is the result of it. He had made a couple of them before this, but with this he came outdoors to capture the streets of the Iranian capital.
This movie entirely set in a taxi, well, the cameras never leaves the car, but car roams around the city, Tehran. A real time movie that runs for nearly 80 minutes. There's no open or the end credits other than the title texts and some statements. The story was very interesting, that I don't know whether it was scripted or factual, but the planning was so good to shoot it in a low profile.
All the actors except the director were non pros. That definitely needs a loud applaud, because the outcome tells the quality of their exhibition. It gives a glimpse of the life as a taxi driver who sees the city through his eyes and meets the people. Some scenes were extremely funny, some were dark humours and some were thoughtful. Each time when a new character enters the frame, a new topic has brought with them and discussed, that mean the movie is totally engaging with a variety that keeps you hooked till the final.
"We already have the world record of hangings after China."
I think the end was very smart, because of that kind of conclusion and no post-production credits, I thought that's how the archives were smuggled out of the country and made it ready. But no one knows the truth how it all has been done, otherwise Jafar Panahi would have landed in a trouble. A rare gem and one of the best of 2015 that you must try it if you are a film fanatic.
Initially, I mean before decide to watch it, I was not sure it will reach my expectations. When I sat for it, the experience was different and now I am extremely happy for giving it a try. Opinion might vary about the film, but the effort must be appreciated. Especially in a circumstance where the filmmaker has everything against him, I meant legally, but came strong in what he believes is his passion. That is inspiring and also for a risk he has taken really paid off.
It won a few Internation Filmfare awards and that's how I actually came to know about this. I'm positive this film won't disappoint you as well, well, if you are not looking for twists and turns like an intelligent or a big budget film. As I said, I could have not asked a better than this, a very simple yet entertaining movie.
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