Wednesday, January 13, 2010


We got out this animated film the other day. We really have to start using love film, or some similar service, as I am a little tired to giving blockbuster practically enough money to buy films that are invariably scratched, and I can only have for one night. Still, I digress.

Persepolis is based on the graphic novel by the same name, and is the tale of a girl growing up in Iran during the revolution of 1978, where the Shah, imposed on the people by the British (there is a reason Iran hates us), was overthrown. We get to see the hopes of the middle class family she is from that there is going to be something better coming, and then growing horror as the Shah is replaced by something equally as bad. Iran became an oppressive islamic republic, and the same people who were imprisoned by the Shah were soon imprisoned under that regime. With Iraq invading, the country fell under a more oppressive regime more quickly.

Its a film that can feel harrowing. Chiara's life is by no means easy, and while it retains wit and humour throughout, the appalling reality of what living under such an oppressive regime, especially as a woman, is clear. Its a beautifully told tale, one of a people who can be considered savages simply because of where they are from, and the difficulties of leaving your home, even one as dangerous as Iran became for Chiara.

Of course this tale is focusing on Chiara, and it is telling that what leads to the greatest hardships in Chiara's existence is failed love rather than the oppression (although arguably her later mistake is opposed on her by the way Iran works, or worked).

An excellent film, and well worth watching.

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