Saturday, 9 January 2010

Heiran (2009) @ فیلم حیران

Baran Kosari and Mehrdad Sedighian star in Heiran.

Wotta scene.
At a glance:
If you go out with a guy your parents don't like, you might get grounded or have your iPod taken away. In some parts of the world, you might get gunned down with a Kalashnikov. Okay, I exaggerate. Like watchin Ingmar Bergman's Summer With Monika, the throes of young love aren't for the faint hearted, not in 1953 when that movie was made and certainly not in the present day either, especially if you follow the road director-scriptwriter Shalizeh Arefpour wants to takes you. Heiran (also Heiraan) is an indie gem that got its greatest exposure yet at the 2009 Toronto International Film Festival recently, chroniclin the difficult romance between one Afghani and one Irani from different worlds.
Bad news on the doorstep:
The version playin at GSC International Screens currently is not 35mm but some DV tape. Blur and difficult to enjoy.
Perennial wonderment:
Accept me, please?
Can Iranians make a more upbeat picture? Well to be fair, unlike some of the more geocentric films that had washed up on these shores recently (namely those 10 titles that ran at the 2008 Iranian Film Fest), Heiran has the advantage of a very universal theme in teenage romance but obviously this isn't your usual Hollywood boy-meets-girl. Thrown in with an immigration angle, we have a 17-year-old village girl Mahi (Baran Kosari) meetin, romancin and then chasin after Heiran (Mehrdad Sedighian) across checkpoints all over the desert. A press release explains: "During the rule of the Taliban in Afghanistan, about three million Afghans, who were mostly illegal immigrants, entered Iran; causing numerous problems for the Iranian society to accept them."
Reminds me of:
Shalizeh Arefpour
Café Setareh, Baran and Summer With Monika.
Most memorable line:
"That's an Afghan for you - always on the run!"
Amacam joker, berapa bintang lu mau kasi?
Half-useful look at a specific administrative problem in world affairs today, with some emotional hooks to keep the pace goin. Could've been an arduous movie like A Very Long Engagement if the director were French, but the "search" part of this movie isn't as long as some would want it to be. That's probably the director wantin to give more focus on the emigrant issue rather than a specific human story. Anyway, here's what Shalizeh Arefpour wanted you to know (in a statement from her): "The thing which can turn an emigrant to a resident, a resident to a dweller and a dweller to an owner is love. I tried to depict the issue of Afghan immigrants whose rights are being trampled along with the rights of my countrywomen."★★★
Bonus material:

I have plenty of hi-res movie stills for you.
Baran Kosari and Farhad Aslani.
Baran Kosari and Mehrdad Sedighian
 Khosro Shakibaei