Tag Archives: Persian

Asbe du-pa / Two-Legged Horse (2008) Samira Makhmalbaf, Ziya Mirza Mohamad, Haron Ahad, Gol-Ghotai, Drama

Asbe du-pa AKA Two-Legged Horse (2008)
A father who has a young son with one leg and no other household members must go to India for some weeks. He hires another boy for a dollar a day to carry the son around on his back, to the school or to whatever whims may occur to the son. Actually the son is so skilled in jumping at really great speed, that he does not need any help or any “horse”. The son’s whims include not only verbal and physical abuse, but also repeated “horse fights” where “the horse” will continually be knocked down. Even “the horse’s” tender feelings for a child girl beggar are exploited and mocked. Because of the brutal and degrading treatment “the horse” will become more and more similar to a real horse.
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Abbas Kiarostami: A Report (2013) Bahman Maghsoudlou, Kurosh Afsharpanah, Shohreh Aghdashloo, Godfrey Cheshire, Documentary, History

Abbas Kiarostami A Report (2013)
An analysis of the style and vision of Abbas Kiarostami, the world’s most iconic Iranian filmmaker, through the lens of his earliest work, including his first short film (Bread & Alley, 1970) and, particularly, his first feature, The Report. This early example of Kiarostami’s work gives insight into his poetic, humanistic tendencies, combining allegorical storytelling with a documentary, neo-realist sensibility, and often exploring the very nature of film as fiction, that have pervaded his work ever since, including such recent international sensations as A Taste of Cherry and Certified Copy. Exclusive interviews with film critics, historians and scholars (including the late great Andrew Sarris) and those directly involved in the making of The Report provide a look at how the career of this master independent auteur began and was shaped.
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Rang-e khoda / The Color of Paradise (1999) Majid Majidi, Hossein Mahjoub, Mohsen Ramezani, Salameh Feyzi, Adventure, Drama, Family

Rang-e khoda AKA The Color of Paradise (1999)
Mohammad, a boy at Tehran’s institute for the blind, waits for his dad to pick him up for summer vacation. While waiting, he realizes a baby bird has fallen from its nest: he chases away a cat, finds the bird, climbs a tree, and puts it back. His father finally comes and takes him to their village where his sisters and granny await. The lad is a loving student of nature and longs for village life with his family, but his father is ashamed of him, wanting to farm the boy out to clear the way for marriage to a woman who knows nothing of this son. Over granny’s objections, dad apprentices Mohammad far from home to a blind carpenter. Can anything bring father and son together?
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Syngué sabour, pierre de patience / The Patience Stone (2012) Atiq Rahimi, Golshifteh Farahani, Hamid Djavadan, Hassina Burgan, Drama, War

La Pierre de Patience
Author Atiq Rahimi’s adapts his own bestselling novel about a Muslim woman whose paralyzed husband unconsciously assumes the role of syngué sabour, which shields her from the sorrows of life in her war-torn village. Her unnamed Middle Eastern country caught up in the insurrection, the loyal, thirty-something wife faithfully sits watch over her vegetative husband, who has been all-but forgotten by his brothers and fellow Jihadists. Over time, she gathers the courage to tell her husband all of the things she had remained silent about during their 10 years of marriage. Throughout the course of their conversations, she speaks frankly of the disappointments, sorrows, and sacrifices that have made her life so difficult throughout the previous decade.
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The Wind Will Carry Us / Bad Ma Ra Khahad Bord (1999) Abbas Kiarostami, Behzad Dorani, Noghre Asadi, Roushan Karam Elmi, Drama

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This idiosyncratic drama from Iran begins as a jeep winds through the hills of Kurdistan, containing an engineer (Behzad Dourani) and his two assistants (whom we never see) as they search for a small village in the mountains. When they arrive, they are greeted by a young boy, who shows them a place they can stay and guides the engineer to the home of an old woman (also never seen) who seems to be dying. No one is sure what the engineer and his men are doing there; some locals think he’s keeping watch of the old woman and wants to purchase her land when she dies, while others think he could be an archeologist searching for rare artifacts.
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Sokout / The Silence (1998) Mohsen Makhmalbaf, Tahmineh Normatova, Nadereh Abdelahyeva, Goibibi Ziadolahyeva, Drama, Music

Sokout (Mohsen Makhmalbaf, 1998)
Because of his special gift in identifying objects by the sounds they make, a blind young boy is employed as a string instrument tuner in a small village in Tajikistan. He may be blind but that does not mean he cannot see. On his way to work, he could tell the quality of the bread the young girls along the streets are peddling by simply touching their ware. His world is made more colorful and quaint because of his sensitivity to his surroundings. The only problem is that he is easily “tempted” by street musicians’ performances and arrives late at work.
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Bicycleran / The Cyclist (1987) Mohsen Makhmalbaf, Mahshid Afsharzadeh, Firouz Kiani, Samira Makhmalbaf, Drama

Bicycleran (1987)
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?
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Kasi az gorbehaye irani khabar nadareh / No One Knows About Persian Cats (2009) Bahman Ghobadi, Negar Shaghaghi, Ashkan Koshanejad, Hamed Behdad, Drama, Music

Kasi az gorbehaye irani khabar nadareh (2009)
Negar and Ashkan, two young Iranian songwriters, decide to set up an underground band and look for other musicians to join them, but the authorities keep putting a spanner in the works. Fed up with being hindered from expressing themselves, the two young people try to get documents to leave the country for Europe.
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Roozi ke zan shodam / The Day I Became a Woman (2000) Marzieh Makhmalbaf, Fatemeh Cherag Akhar, Hassan Nebhan, Shahr Banou Sisizadeh, Comedy, Drama

Roozi ke zan shodam (2000)
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 no longer play with the boys she had been playing with only the day before because she is now a woman. Told from the perspective of a 9-year-old girl who does not feel like or know what the word “woman” refers to, we see how devastatingly this affects both the girl and the boy with whom she had been friends. The second part is about a young woman who decides to enter a bicycle race against her husband’s wishes. As first, the husband and then increasing numbers of men from her village ride beside her on horseback to convince her to return home. The race begins to symbolize a freedom that she desperately wants from the limitations that have been placed on her. Finally, the third part shows us an old woman who has come into some money and is now free to do what she wants.
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Beed-e majnoon / The Willow Tree (2005) Majid Majidi, Parviz Parastui, Roya Taymourian, Afarin Obeisi, Drama

Beed-e majnoon (2005)
Blind since childhood, Youssef has a devoted wife, loving daughter, and successful university career, but his affliction fills him with secret torment. As if in answer to his prayers, a clinic restores his sight- a miracle that is double-edged. Although this new world of sight and color floods him with ecstacy- the breathtaking images seen through his reawakened eyes include a dazzling vista of snow-blanketed hills, a shower of molten gold sparks in a jewlery foundry, an array of lollipop lights behind a rain-speckled car window- it also plunges him into a labyrinth of confusion and temptations. A pretty student begins to enclipse his previously invisible wife; he silently watches a subway pickpoket, who fixes him with a look of withering complicity. Eager to claim the lost life he feels he is owed but unable to take the next step, Youssef is inflamed with possibility and paralyzed with egoism.
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