Banned in Iran this experimental film uses fictionalized, grainy, home video footage to tell the story of the abusive relationship between a successful middle aged Iranian businessman and his 18 year old wife, Goli. She has just received a camcorder as his birthday present and the entire story is told from the view of this camcorder. Goli has lived with him and been his sex slave since he took her captive as a nine year old from her family in the Kurdish rebellion. Now she is pregnant, but as she starts to talk back to him and he discovers that she has learned English and started to read, he again is making her more and more a prisoner in his home.
This twisted Iranian narrative follows a mysterious couple from Tehran as they distribute large bags of money in an impoverished mountain border town. Beginning as a black comedy, the film’s mood transforms as the games played by Kaveh (director Mani Haghighi) and Leyla (Taraneh Alidoosti) become increasingly perverse, as they find inventive ways of humiliating the recipients of the cash. The immorality of the central characters is at times sickening, and their chain of lies is often as puzzling to us as they are to the townsfolk depicted onscreen. What is the relationship between the pair and why are they giving away money to the needy? Modest Reception has no easy answers nor pat resolutions – instead Haghighi takes the viewer on an intriguing ride into the dark recesses of the human spirit.
Away from professional stadiums, bright lights, and manicured fields, there’s another side of soccer. Tucked away on alleys, side streets, and concrete courts, people play in improvised games. Every country has a different word for it. In the United States, we call it “pick-up soccer.” In Trinidad, it’s “taking a sweat.” In England, it’s “having a kick-about.” In Brazil, the word is “pelada,” which literally means “naked”—the game stripped down to its core. It’s the version of the game played by anyone, anywhere—and it’s a window into lives all around the world. Pelada is a documentary following Luke and Gwendolyn, two former college soccer stars who didn’t quite make it to the pros. Not ready for it to be over, they take off, chasing the game. From prisoners in Bolivia to moonshine brewers in Kenya, from freestylers in China to women who play in hijab in Iran, Pelada is the story of the people who play.
Documentary – War zone borders, engine trouble and the difficulties of making money to survive couldn’t outweigh the thrill of adventure and discovery Daniel Rintz encountered while motorcycling around the world for two and a half years.
Since women are banned from soccer matches, Iranian females masquerade as males so they can slip into Tehran’s stadium to see the game between Iran and Bahrain. The ones who are caught and arrested are taken to a holding area and guarded by soldiers. One sympathetic soldier agrees to watch the game through a peephole and recount the action to the impatient fans.
Tehran’s air pollution has reached maximum levels because of thermal inversion. Unmarried 30-something Niloofar lives with her aged mother, and stays busy with her alterations shop. When doctors insist that her mother must leave smoggy Tehran for her respiratory health, Niloofar’s brother and family elders decide that she must also move away to accompany her mother. Now Niloofar is torn between family loyalty and living her own life. As the youngest she has always obeyed their orders. Can she stand up for herself this time?
We are taken care of when we are children and we do not know as much as when we are older. There is less to worry about. But it does not mean the things that are important to us as children have less significance. You see, for Scruffy, despite that she is from a poor family of the countryside, it is very important to study well, because she will become an asthma doctor. The doctor said her dad will die but she has decided – she will grow up and cure her father. Equally important is to run away from her grandmother, who almost always is lurking around in the dark corners of the house with a comb to fix her messy hair. Death is too abstract to understand, war is a word one hears on the radio that grownups sometimes listen to. Yet, as Scruffy lives through her days full of happiness and misery at full steam, the most tumultuous years of Iran become unveiled on the background, as we are introduced to the Revolution and the Iran-Iraqi war through the eyes of a child.
A government bodyguard protects a politician from a suicide bomber, and then begins to question his dedication to his job.
After four years apart, Ahmad returns to his wife Marie in Paris in order to progress their divorce. During his brief stay, he cannot help noticing the strained relationship between Marie and her daughter Lucie. As he attempts to improve matters between mother and daughter Ahmad unwittingly lifts the lid on a long buried secret…
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.
Fa Mulan gets the surprise of her young life when her love, Captain Li Shang asks for her hand in marriage. Before the two can have their happily ever after, the Emperor assigns them a secret mission, to escort three princesses to Chang’an, China. Mushu is determined to drive a wedge between the couple after he learns that he will lose his guardian job if Mulan marries into the Li family.
In 1970s Iran, Marjane ‘Marji’ Statrapi watches events through her young eyes and her idealistic family of a long dream being fulfilled of the hated Shah’s defeat in the Iranian Revolution of 1979. However as Marji grows up, she witnesses first hand how the new Iran, now ruled by Islamic fundamentalists, has become a repressive tyranny on its own.
A yellow cab is driving through the vibrant and colourful streets of Tehran. Very diverse passengers enter the taxi, each candidly expressing their views while being interviewed by the driver who is no one else but the director Jafar Panahi himself. His camera placed on the dashboard of his mobile film studio captures the spirit of Iranian society through this comedic and dramatic drive…
On the day before their holiday trip to Dubai, a wife who believes her husband is unfaithful enlists the help of Roohi, a young woman sent by an agency to clean the house. She asks Roohi to make an appointment and gather information at the salon of the woman she suspects. Roohi is betrothed, innocent of marital discord. Over the course of the day, she, the couple, their small son, the wife’s sister and husband, and the beautician engage in a series of exchanges, confrontations, and prevarications. Are the wife’s suspicions unwarranted; is her behavior imperiling her marriage? Acts of kindness may go awry. And the trip to Dubai?
Forced out of their apartment due to dangerous works on a neighboring building, Emad and Rana move into a new flat in the center of Tehran. An incident linked to the previous tenant will dramatically change the young couple’s life.
Akbar has just turned eighteen. He has been held in a rehabilitation centre for committing murder at the age of sixteen when he was condemned to death. Legally speaking, he had to reach the age of eighteen so that the conviction could be carried out. Now, Akbar is transferred to prison to await the day of his execution. A’la, a friend of Akbar, who himself has undergone imprisonment for burglary, soon after his release tries desperately to gain the consent of Akbar’s plaintiff so as to stop the execution
According to the police, Negar’s father committed suicide. Having had a happy life, Negar suspects that his death has not happened the way it seems. She starts unfolding the truth through an unconventional investigation.
A politically complacent middle-aged man and a young pro-democracy activist debate about the future of their country while hiding from the police, in this fascinating drama that blends scripted scenes with on-the-ground footage from Iran’s 2009 Green Revolution.