Art and Experience in Fajr Film Festival
A Very Common Citizen; The story of loneliness in a crowded city
Art and Experience: One of the most attractive films of Art and Experience Cinematic Group in this edition of the festival is “A Very Common Citizen”. The film it was screened primarily in Chicago Film Festival and now it is supposed to be screened in several European countries too. Majid Barzegar who experienced success in international scale before, could attract cinemagoers with “Parviz”. Now he is one of the most famous and authentic names for national serious audience and it can be far if those who liked “Parviz” miss watching “A Very Common Citizen” in FIFF. In some interviews, Barzegar assured that his three recent films was a trilogy while he hasn’t have any program for making a trilogy but their common characteristics and concepts set them beside each other.
Barzegar has explained the story of “A Very Ordinary Citizen” in an interview with Cinema Newspaper: “Mr. Safari (Soren Menaskanian) an 83-years-old man lives lonely in an old town in Tehran. His only son (Parviz) who lives abroad decided to take him to Canada for meet and medical care. A young and energetic girl (Shadi Karam Roudi) is hired for this issue from his son but Mr. Safari thinks she has been always his lover. This issue put the girl in a way that she has had no imagine of it.” “A Very Ordinary Citizen” is supposed to be an artistic film. If “Parviz” was an artistic film and met an isolated character, we go for another cast-away character and if “Parviz” was acted by a non-famous actor we again go for an Armenian old man actor who nobody knows him; an old man that is supposed to practice how to walk with stick in the first sequence of the film and learns if Parviz had calm life that changes to a stormy one like “Akaky Akakievich” (Main Character of “Overcoat” of Nikolai Gogol but in “A Very Ordinary Citizen” we cannot find something like overcoat to reach to continue the story. The structure of the film is torn and without losing overcoat, pushes Mr. Safari to a murderer and rubbery that embeds to the film by force. If in “Parviz” the main challenge was in the heart of leading character with his environment and the people around, here in this film a man comes at the end of love Dead End and make Mr. Safari bloody off. This is not believable and even the extreme anger of Travel Agency’s guard seems too much. Of course, none of these anger people are not target of Safari. “A Very Ordinary Citizen” could be a good film if Barzegar-who everybody has no doubt he is a big talent in filmmaking-made another considering drama instead of copying filmmaking from himself. And you can have questions like these that “A Very Ordinary Citizen” is the story of old man or the girl? How the director showed oppositions of an active, materialistic young life with melancholy, declining and old life? The old man is in love with girl or just memorizes something from his past? However, if a film is stingy in giving information to its audience is not basically a value, even it can be seek like its main character.