The Iranian


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Sehaty Foreign Exchange

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"The day I became a woman" in U.S. theaters

THE DAY I BECAME A WOMAN is a beautiful triptych depicting three stages in a woman's life. It marks the debut of first time director Marzieh Meshkini's. Alternately funny, surreal and heartbreaking and filled with breathtaking imagery, the film features a script by Mohsen Makhmalbaf, one of the masters of the new Iranian Cinema.

It has received numerous awards including the Best First Film prize at the 2000 Venice and Chicago Film Festivals, Best Director at the Thessaloniki Film Festival and Best Film (Asian Filmmakers) at the Pusan Film Festival.

It will open in Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco on April 6th. In Los Angeles it will be showing at the Loews Cineplex's Fairfax Theatre at the corner of Beverly and Fairfax.

In the first chapter of the film we are introduced to Havva, a young girl, on the day of her 9th birthday. She is told that as of noon, the hour of her birth, she has become a woman and must play by a different set of rules. She coaxes one more hour of freedom out of her mother and grandmother.

The second vignette follows a woman's bicycle race that for one young woman, Ahoo, becomes a race for her life. As she rides her bicycle, she is persistently pursued her husband, her in-laws, and the elders of their clan, all on horseback and all of whom remind her, increasingly threateningly, that if she continues the race she will suffer drastic consequences.

In the final sequence an elderly wheelchair-bound woman assisted by a youth visits the massive duty-free stores of Kish Island and accumulates all manner of goods and appliances.

The three sequences come together as the old woman waits on the beach to load her treasures onto a boat that is to take her home. The film yields a testimony that is at once poetic and powerful to the experience of Iranian women, limited as they are in their choices in daily life.


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