Bridge to Iran: Tehran Has No More Pomegranates!
Regions: Middle East
Topics: Music / Art / Culture
Tehran Has No More Pomegranates! is a postmodern documentary that is as witty and engaging as it is informative. The style of the film is fun and very visual, with the director, Massoud Bakhshi, using incredible archival footage, an original visual approach and terrific soundtrack that takes us through 150 years of Tehran’s history. Onscreen, Bakhshi may fail to complete his film, but he succeeds in both documenting Tehran's history and entertaining us with its poignant contradictions.
ABOUT THE FILMMAKER:
Massoud Bakshi was born in Tehran, Iran and is part of the new generation of Iranian filmmakers. He earned his high school diploma in photography and cinema in 1990 and his BS in Agriculture Engineering in 1995. He later studied filmmaking in Italy and cultural sector financing in France. He has worked as a film critic, screenwriter, and
producer. His films have won many international prizes.
Bagh Dad Bar Ber (200
Tehran Has No More Pomegranates! (2007)
Bridge to Iran is a unique new series on Link TV that showcases documentary films by contemporary independent Iranian filmmakers who live and work in Iran. This nationally-broadcast series will provide a fresh view of what ordinary Iranians are concerned about and the issues they grapple with. The series covers a wide-ranging scope of subjects: first-hand accounts by young girls facing womanhood within an Islamic society; religious pilgrims who risk their lives to visit a holy site in war-torn Iraq; rural life and political awareness; and an energetic and surprising exploration of Tehran as a mega metropolis.
This is the first time an American television channel has presented a series of documentary films about Iran by Iranian filmmakers. The result is a shattering of our preconceived ideas about a nation and culture that most Americans have little or no real knowledge or experience of. Each documentary in the series will be introduced by Salome Azizi, the Bridge to Iran series host, with comments from each filmmaker, who will provide additional context and background.
Tehran Has No More Pomegranates!
35mm. 68 mins. Color/B&W. Farsi With English Subtitles.
Tehran is a large village near the city of Rey, full of gardens and fruit trees. Its inhabitants live in anthill-like underground holes. The village’s several districts are constantly at war. Tehranis’ main occupations are theft and crime, though the king pretends they are subject to him. They grow excellent fruits, notably an excellent pomegranate, which is found only in Tehran.
- Asar-o-Lblab, 1241 A.D.
36th Rotterdam International Film Festival, The Netherlands
20th International Documentary Film Festival of Amsterdam IDFA 2007
51st Cork International Film Festival, Ireland
30th Sao Paulo International Film Festival, Brazil
1001 Istanbul Documentary Film Festival, Turkey 2007
Drake International Film Festival, Italy 2007
13th Boston Festival of films from Iran, USA
CINEMA-VERITE International documentary film festival, Iran 2007
Cinema East Film Festival, NY, USA 2007
Doc Point Helsinki International Film Festival 2007
Ecocinema International Film Festival, Greece 2008
Human Rights International Film Festival, Switzerland 2008
UCLA Iranian Film Festival, USA 2008
Hot Docs International Documentary Festival, Canada 2008
Planete Doc Review International Film Festival , Poland 2008
"Jeu de pomme" International film festival,France 2007
"Well-played" Iran-Arab Film Festival,Germany 2008
Full Frame International Documentary Film Festival USA 2008
"Flandres" International Film Festival Gent-Belgium 2008
15th Alt?nkoza Film, Culture and Art Festival, Turkey 2008
Santiago International Film Festival SANFIC 2008 "Jewels of Middle- East," Chile
Morelia International Film Festival 2008, Mexico.
Winner: Best Director, 11th House of Cinema Film Festival, 2007, Iran;
Winner: Best Director, 25th Fajr Int. Film Festival, 2007, Iran;
Winner: AVINI Prize for Best Documentary of the year 2007, Iran;
Winner: Audience Award, CINEMA VERITE International Documentary Film Festival, 2007 Iran.
A testimony of the agitated life in the Iranian capital colored by subtle irony. Probably the only resource to explain its controversial reality, modernization attempts ,and the incorporation of western values. Tehran has no more Pomegranates is far from the type of film that comes to one’s mind when thinking of Iranian cinema.
Estado de São Paulo
An imaginative and engaging history of Tehran (formerly spelled Teheran), "Tehran Has No More Pomegranates!" uses a petulant, barbed humor to show how the city has undergone a sea change to become the capital of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Young documaker Massoud Bakhshi doesn't make any earth-shaking revelations, instead delivering a steady stream of irony about his drastically transformed society, where even such an apparently harmless topic as change is subject to state censorship. This is a tasty morsel for fests, expatriate Iranians and ands attuned to more experimental doc work.
Mockingly, as though following orders about how the film should be made, Bakhshi continually contrasts the bad old Teheran full of dirty illiterates with the marvelous modern city, while images suggest just the opposite.
Deborah Young, Variety
Considering how often it gets mentioned in the international press these days, Tehran may well have the lowest recognition value of any major city in the Middle East. "Egypt" may be synonymous with pyramids, but reportage from Cairo tends to trot out the Nile, maybe Tahrir Square, as visual filler. Now, armchair tourists can fall back on 'Tehran Has No More Pomegranates!' a profane portrait of the Iranian capital by writer-director and Tehran native Massoud Bakhshi.
The film is oddly successful on two, apparently mutual-exclusive, and fronts. On one hand it's an intimate representation of an idiosyncratic city. On the other, it captures strains of Tehran that will echo in the experiences of urbanites the world over, making this parochial film a good barometer of 21st-century urbanism.
Jim Quilty, Daily Star
Tehran Has No More Pomegranates by Massoud Bakhshi is a special and refreshing documentary. Not a real story, or an upgraded report, but a cleverly constructed portrait of a city.
Bakhshi made a smart movie which is dramatic and funny at the same time, which contains a healthy dose of mockery without being cynical and which is on top of that imaginative and informative.
Marrigje de Bok, Power off culture
The filmmaker, Massoud Bakhshi, reviews several centuries of the history of the Iranian capital Tehran from various economic, social, cultural, political, environmental, and architectural perspectives with an irony in terms of words, action and situations. The film is full of fresh ideas. It has taken the director six years to make and it is based on the activities of the film crew to collect evidence and documents to make a film.