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2016 UCLA CELEBRATION OF IRANIAN CINEMA

APRIL 30 - MAY 22, 2016

Billy Wilder Theater
Westwood Village

(corner of Westwood & Wilshire)

UCLA Film & Television Archive and Farhang Foundation present the annual UCLA Celebration of Iranian Cinema at the Billy Wilder Theater at the Hammer Museum in Westwood Village.

VIP Opening Reception with Director Soheila Golestani
April 30, 2016

Advance tickets $10 through UCLA.

Tickets also available at theater box office one hour before showtime: FREE to all UCLA students with valid ID; $8 other students, seniors and UCLA Alumni Association members with ID.

Buy General Admission Ticket Now

SCREENING SCHEDULE

SATURDAY, APRIL 30
7:30 PM

TWO (Do) - U.S. Premiere
Iran, 2015 86Min / DIR: Soheila Golestani
CAST: Mahtab Nasirpour, Parviz Parastui, Sogol Khaligh
In this fascinating character study by filmmaker Soheila Golestani, a woman is hired to clean house for a man who is closing an apartment he inherited. Their strangely evolving relationship confounds expectations, as each character’s complexities first set up and then dismantle the possibility of connection. Golestani, star of Today (2014), featured in last year’s edition of this program, coaxes bravura performances from her distinguished leads in this, her directorial debut.

Trailer

IN PERSON: Soheila Golestani, Director

SUNDAY, MAY 1
3:00 PM

TWO (Do) - Encore Screening
Iran, 2015 86Min / DIR: Soheila Golestani
CAST: Mahtab Nasirpour, Parviz Parastui, Sogol Khaligh
In this fascinating character study by filmmaker Soheila Golestani, a woman is hired to clean house for a man who is closing an apartment he inherited. Their strangely evolving relationship confounds expectations, as each character’s complexities first set up and then dismantle the possibility of connection. Golestani, star of Today (2014), featured in last year’s edition of this program, coaxes bravura performances from her distinguished leads in this, her directorial debut.

Trailer

IN PERSON: Soheila Golestani, Director

SUNDAY, MAY 1
7:00 PM

THE SALE (Haraj) - West Coast Premiere
Iran, 2014 / 88 min. / DIR: Hossein Shahabi
Cast: Fariba Khademi, Nasim Abadi, Mahsa Abiz, Maryam Sarmadi, Esmat Rezapour.
When professional artist Forough learns that her husband has gone to prison over bad business dealings, it is also revealed that he has kept a second, “temporary” wife, who now demands her legal dowry, which Forough must raise in the absence of her husband. Selling her art and furnishings, she enters into a complicated set of negotiations with her rival, demonstrating the tortuous straits that modern Iranian women often navigate.

Trailer

DOLLS DON'T KNOW
Iran, 2015 / 50 min. / DIR: Nava Rezvani
Filmmaker Nava Rezvani profiles various women who were convinced or compelled to marry when very young, introduced to every kind of wifely duty, then consigned to their fate without a voice. Candid narration, and dispiriting depictions of weddings and subsequent home life lend dimension and dignity to this widely experienced social phenomenon.

IRANIAN NINJA
Iran, 2014 / 31 min. / DIR: Marjan Riahi
In contemporary Iran, some 3,000 women seek empowerment through mastery of the martial arts discipline of Ninjutsu. In this documentary, we witness one group’s rigorous training and learn of the commitment they and their families make in encouraging them to defend themselves, and to excel as Ninjas (not only as wives and mothers) in a hostile world.

MONDAY, MAY 2
7:30 PM

TIME TO LOVE
Iran, 2014 / 99 min. / DIR: Alireza Raissian
Cast: Leila Hatami, Shahab Hosseini, Farhad Aslani, Bita Farahi, Parviz Porhosseini.
In filmmaker Alireza Raissian’s timely drama, iconic actress Leila Hatami portrays Bita, a Tehran-based attorney specializing in the defense of women in divorce proceedings, who often emboldens as well as defends her typically oppressed clients. No favorite among ex-husbands, she suddenly finds herself entangled in an intrigue involving her own marriage, where the personal and the professional converge with calamitous results.

Trailer

IN PERSON: Alireza Raissian, Director

FRIDAY, MAY 6
7:30 PM

THE MAN WHO BECAME A HORSE (Mardi ke Asb Shod) - North America Premiere
Iran, 2015 / 113 min. / DIR: Amir Hossein Saghafi
Cast: Mahmoud Nazar-Alian, Levon Haftvan, Mazdak Mirabedini, Melissa Zakeri, Mahtab Saeedi.
This luminous feature introduces an elderly laborer and his adult daughter who live in spartan circumstances in a seaside community of day laborers. When circumstances change the community’s fortunes, the daughter sees the chance—or necessity—of breaking away, setting up a cataclysmic, intergenerational conflict. Spellbindingly beautiful, the film hearkens to the Iranian New Wave in its obliquely powerful and poetic treatment of societal schisms and inexorable change.

SATURDAY, MAY 7
7:30 PM

NAHID
Iran, 2015 / 105 min. / DIR: Ida Panahandeh
Cast: Sareh Bayat, Pezhman Bazeghi, Navid Mohammad Zadeh.
Nahid, a divorced mother with a young son, could find happiness with honorable Masoud, who offers her marriage and stability, maintaining a clandestine “temporary” marriage with her in the meantime. Avoiding a next step, Nahid runs herself ragged simply holding her compromised existence together. Her reasons, and their impact on her, make up the basis of filmmaker Ida Panahandeh’s superb second feature, rich with emotion and contemporary relevance.

Trailer

Preceded by:

JUDGEMENT DAY
Iran, 2015 / 7 min. / DIR: Karim Mohammad Amini
Cast: Tina Pakravan.
In this alarming short film, an unsuspecting woman becomes a charged symbol of transgression.

FRIDAY, MAY 13
7:30 PM

THE COW (Gaav)
Iran, 1969 / 104 min. / DIR: Dariush Mehrjui
CAST: Ezat-Ollah Entezami, Ali Nasirian, Jafar Vali, Jamshid Mashayekhi, Esmat Safavi.
Filmmaker Dariush Mehrjui’s timeless classic, the progenitor of the Iranian New Wave, is a parable of human frailty. When a rural farmer’s beloved cow dies, his neighbors dare not tell him the truth, fearing that the news will destroy him, but madness descends all the same. Rich with philosophical suggestion, the film has haunted Iranian cinema ever since, setting a tonal and metaphoric standard to which many have returned.

Trailer

IN PERSON: Hamid Naficy, Film Historian

MONDAY, MAY 16
7:30 PM

WEDNESDAY, MAY 9 (Charshanbeh, 19 Ordibhesht)
Iran, 2015 / 101 min. / DIR: Vahid Jalilvand
CAST: Niki Karimi, Amir Aghaee, Vahid Jalilvand, Shahrokh Frotanian, Saeed Dakh.
A young woman is abandoned by all when her husband is unfairly imprisoned over an innocent accident, owing “blood money” to a vengeful plaintiff. Seeing an advertisement that summons aspirants for help with their problems, she joins a throng of people who convene to appeal to one mysterious, beneficent man, who in turn finds that the price of generosity is greater than he reckoned.

Trailer

FRIDAY, MAY 20
7:30 PM

HADJI SHA
Iran, 2014 / 81 min. / DIR: Zamani Esmati
CAST: Roya Teimoorian, Afsaneh Chehreh Azad, Leila Zareah, Sahar Abdollahi, Behdad Royan, Hooman Ashkboos.
This arresting, emotional drama presents an insular, extended family of women who occupy an urban household, with no male family member in their lives.  One woman has become their protector and arbiter of their disputes and problems, who presents herself in a male guise; that of “Hadji Sha.”  Learning that harm has befallen a vulnerable, young niece, Hadji Sha must mediate dangers and injustices, marshaling her fearsome wrath for the greater good.  

Trailer

IN PERSON: Roya Teimoorian, Actress & Zamani Esmati, Director

SATURDAY, MAY 21
7:30 PM

RISK OF ACID RAIN (Ehtemal-e Baran-e Asidi)
Iran, 2015 / 102 min. / DIR: Behtash Sanaeeha
CAST: Shams Langeroodi, Maryam Moghadam, Pouriya Rahimi Sam, Arsolan Abdolahi, Eesa Hosseini.
A lonely, elderly office worker takes room in a cheap hotel while seeking a long-lost friend in a town far from his own.  There he crosses paths with a restless young woman seeking a pretend “uncle” to get her out of scrapes.  Aided by the amiable hotelier, the two new friends find solace and needed joy in their unexpected friendship. 

Trailer

IN PERSON: Behtash Sanaeeha, Director

Preceded by:

FRIED FISH (Mahiye Sorkh Shodeh)
Iran, 2014 / 11 min. / DIR: Leila Khalilzadeh.
Cast: Davoud Namayandeh.
This lovely, animated short film posits the sacrifices that are worthwhile in order to access one’s spiritual sustenance. 

SUNDAY, MAY 22
7:00 PM

AVALANCHE (Bahman)
Iran, 2015 / 88 min. / DIR: Morteza Farshbaf
CAST: Fatemeh Motamed-Arya, Ahmad Hamed, Farideh Smaeeli, Maryam Shirazi, Amir Rashedi.
A hospital nurse is hired to care for an absent doctor’s frail mother on 10 consecutive night shifts during a blizzard.  Exhausted after each shift, she experiences insomnia at home, poring over household clues as to her alienation within her family, and daily becoming more ghostlike, in what may be an emotional death or rebirth.  Fatemeh Motamed-Arya portrays the weary nurse with utter precision, as director Morteza Farshbaf masterfully constructs an atmosphere of charged unfamiliarity in only his second feature. 

Trailer

All films screened in Persian with English subtitles.

Notes

June/July 2016 Newsletter

Created by Farhang Foundation Jun 24, 2016 at 3:40pm. Last updated by Farhang Foundation Jun 29, 2016.

March 2016 Newsletter

Created by Farhang Foundation Mar 10, 2016 at 4:58am. Last updated by Farhang Foundation Mar 10, 2016.

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