Contemporary Iranian Cinema

Afghanistan-born, Tehran-based Navid Mahmudi’s timely drama about Afghan refugees was a prize winner at Busan last fall. Rona (Sadaf Asgari) and Hamed (Matin Heydarinia), a young Afghan couple in love, hope to make a better life for themselves in Europe. They arrive illegally in Tehran and, with a friend’s help, begin planning to make their way to Turkey and beyond. But in order to be accepted in Europe, they will need a convincing reason for claiming refugee status. A forbidden conversion from Islam to Christianity seems to offer a solution—but brings with it additional problems and dangers! Writer-director Mahmoudi moved with his family from Afghanistan to Iran when he was six years old. The Afghan diaspora has been a frequent subject of his work.

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