Ira­nian film wins at Cannes

New Straits Times - - World -

CANNES: A movie by an Ira­nian who was ar­rested for his work in his home coun­try won the Un Cer­tain Re­gard com­pe­ti­tion at the Cannes Film Fes­ti­val on Satur­day, bol­ster­ing the coun­try’s film­mak­ers’ rep­u­ta­tion for de­fy­ing the cen­sors to make high-qual­ity films.

A Man of In­tegrity, filmed in Iran but un­likely ever to be shown there due to cen­sor­ship, is a tense drama about a man per­se­cuted by pow­er­ful eco­nomic and po­lit­i­cal forces who re­fuses to bribe his way out of trou­ble.

Writer-di­rec­tor Mo­ham­mad Ra­soulof, 45, was ar­rested along­side di­rec­tor Ja­far Panahi in 2010 and sen­tenced to jail. He is free on bail and has con­tin­ued to make films that ex­plore po­lit­i­cal and moral cor­rup­tion.

Ra­soulof said he hoped the prize would make it eas­ier for him to make films in Iran.

“I love Iran, but it’s like an al­co­holic fa­ther. Some­times it hits me,” he said.

Ra­soulof ’s win comes three months after As­ghar Farhadi won the Best For­eign Lan­guage Film Os­car for The Sales­man.

“In­ter­na­tional sup­port has re­ally helped all film­mak­ers and es­pe­cially me, by stop­ping the pres­sure they were putting on us,” Ra­soulof said, adding that the Ira­nian author­i­ties had given him a per­mit to shoot A Man of In­tegrity but only after he signed a pa­per promis­ing not to make it “too dark”. Reuters

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