DocPoint to screen movies from Iran

January 20, 2021 - 18:37

TEHRAN – DocPoint – Helsinki Documentary Film Festival has picked the Iranian documentaries “Fish Eye”, “Maya” and “Radiograph of a Family” to screen at its 20th edition, which will go online from January 29 to February 7, the organizers have announced.

“Fish Eye” by Amin Behruzzadeh follows Parsian Shila, Iran’s biggest industrial fishing boat that plans to catch 2000 tons of tuna fish. The film depicts the cruelty and harsh conditions of the job, and just how nature is affected by this activity.

Out in the deep waters, life unfolds frozen in time, atavistic, like an account watched through the wet eyes of a fish. With this ocean crossing, the director invites the viewers to plunge into the everyday life of large-scale fishing, which is presented in the film like a pitiless industrial work assembly line, but not exempt of poetry. 

“Radiograph of a Family”, a co-production from Norway, Iran and Switzerland by Firuzeh Khosrovani, is about her mother when she married her father Hossein. On one hand, Tayi was excited about her new life, on the other, she had doubts about being distanced from her family and religion. At that time, Hossein was studying radiology in Switzerland and he had a much more worldly attitude than Tayi had ever seen in Iran.

This dichotomy remains in their marriage and affects Khosrovani when she grows up. With this film, she carefully reconstructs not only her family’s story but also at the same time makes an x-ray scan of the history of Iranian society.

“Maya”, a co-production between Iran and the UK by Jamshid Mojaddadi, shows how daily life at Iran’s second-biggest zoo is interrupted when Mohsen, the head keeper, takes Maya, his 4-year-old Bengal tiger, to perform in a fiction film in the north of the country by the Caspian Sea, which was once home to the now extinct Caspian tiger. 

In between filming, Mohsen lets Maya off the leash and allows her to roam in this sparsely populated landscape, she is the first ‘free’ tiger in Iran in over 60 years. But instead of the perfect experience of the wild that Mohsen hopes it to be, the trip kick starts a series of events that mark the end of Mohsen and Maya’s relationship and in the process reveals a much darker and more complex side to Mohsen and the Zoo in which Maya and the other animals are kept.

Last year, DocPoint held a retrospective of Iranian documentarian Mehrdad Oskui. 

Oskui’s award-winning documentaries “My Mother’s Home, Lagoon”, “Nose, Iranian Style”, “Sunless Shadows” and “The Other Side of Burkha” were reviewed during the festival.

Oskui, who has won several awards for his films at Iranian and international festivals, also held a master class about his working methods and filmmaking philosophy during the festival. 

Photo: “Fish Eye” by Amin Behruzzadeh.


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