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Colors of Memory | Mina-ye shahr-e khamoosh (2007)|
Amir Shahab Razavian
Date of birth:
1965, Iran, Hamadan
Mohammad Farokhmanesh, Armin Hofmann, Frank Geiger
Iran | Germany | Canada
Persian | German
Filled with denial and distrust, heart surgeon Dr. Bahman Parsa (Shahbaz Noshir) returns to his home country Iran after 30 years in Germany.
There he meets two men who will change his attitude towards life: Ghanati (Ezatollah Entezami), a 70 year old waterfinder and Bahrami, a young and reckless taxi driver.
Together with them he travels to his hometown Bam, which was destroyed after a heavy earthquake a few years ago.
Starring: Shahbaz Noshir, Ezatollah Entezami, Saber Abar, Reza Khamseh, Roya Javidnia, Mirja Mahir, Hilda Ranjbaran, Maryam Meschian, Mozhgan Rabbany
Minaye Shahr e Khamoush (Mina from the Silent City, Amir Shahab Razavian) was one of my favourite films of the festival, particularly for the many-layered and intricately woven journey undertaken by its central protagonist, and for the brief glimpses of the many contradictions of daily life in contemporary Iran.
Beginning briefly in Hamburg, Bahman Parsa, a heart surgeon, returns to Iran for the first time since the revolution.
While in Iran, he travels to his hometown of Bam, a city still suffering from the devastating earthquake of 2003.
Amongst the ruins, past and present unfold contiguously, the ruins and deserted family home coming to symbolise the dispersal of the Parsa family (and by implication the nation: Parsa being the original name for Persepolis, capital of the Persian empire) during the revolution – it is suggested that Bahman’s father served as a military officer under the Shah.
Among the contemporary references, Bahman’s young driver points out some of the changes that have taken place such as the re-naming of streets. For example, what was once Eisenhower St (which the driver explains was named after an English singer!) is now Azadi (peace) St.
The young driver is also forever casting his gaze at girls on the street, and explains the coded language of honking, hinting at the prevalence of coded communication in Iranian culture more generally.
Billboards, mobile phones, comments about nose jobs and techno music highlight the presence of modern, Western consumer culture, which is juxtaposed with glimpses of revolutionary images on TV, and Ahmadinejad talking about nuclear power plants.
These details successfully manage to give this film both local specificity and contemporary global relevance, resisting the “nativist” tendencies which Dabashi has accused some Iranian filmmakers of. -- Michelle Langford)
Selected filmography of Amir Shahab Razavian
- Colors of Memory | Mina-ye shahr-e khamoosh (2007)
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