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Iranian Cinema

jclarke | Thursday March 06, 2014

Categories: A Level, EDUQAS A Level, EDUQAS A2, FM4, Section A: World Cinema, Analysis, Film Analysis, Films & Case Studies, World Cinema, At Five in the Afternoon, Blackboards, Close Up, The Apple, The Wind Will Carry Us, Genres & Case Studies, Iranian, Hot Entries, Key Concepts, Audience, Film Language, Representation

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WJEC A2 Film Studies FM4 Section A World Cinema Aspects of a National Cinema: Iranian Cinema 1990 - Present


Let us start with a piece from what could serve as possible further reading beyond this resource as it suggests the complexity of the subject we are exploring: “for many pious families, going to the cinema was tantamount to committing a sin. The main reason for this was that cinematic representations of women and love upset the delicate dualism which had long attended these topics in Iranian culture.? [1] It seems fair to say that this excerpt is a powerful description of the relationship between the traditional culture of Iran and the place of the cinema in it. It’s appropriate to state here, albeit in a very simplistic way that Iranian culture has a rich history of poetry and art. You can read more about the country’s profound contribution to human culture here.

It is generally agreed that Iranian cinema has been particularly challenged in terms of how they might construct narratives that are able to offer realistic portraits of Iranian life. Certainly, a particular challenge has centred around finding meaningful ways of representing women and their experiences and perspectives. As such, metaphors and allegory (two narrative devices that every aspiring university undergraduate of Film Studies should have a firm grasp of in this writer’s opinion) have been developed with particular creative energy as part of Iranian cinema’s filmic language and mise-en-scene.

Iranian cinema then, has found opportunities to move beyond and counterpoint dominant realist conventions and the cultural impositions of a political regime that has not encouraged the cinema as an expressive form. As an aside, a way into a national cinema that is perhaps very much an unknown for students is that it may be fruitful to suggest a connection with the films of Ken Loach and before that, Italian neorealism....

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