Asian Movie Pulse picks “Asho”, “Khatemeh”
Art and Experience:
The Asian Movie Pulse website has announced the 15 Best Asian Documentaries of 2020 with two Iranian movies “Asho” and “Khatemeh” among them.
“Asho” by Jafar Najafi is about a little shepherd interested in cinema. The routine with his herd is challenging, but passion for Hollywood and acting allows his dreams to mix in with real life. Asho and a girl, who were promised for each other in marriage since they were small as dictated by tradition in his village, try to ignore love with their childish tenacity.
“Asho” was selected as the best children’s documentary at the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) in November.
It also won the award for best short and medium-length documentary at the 23rd Olympia International Film Festival for Children and Young People in early December.
Directed by brothers Hadi and Mehdi Zarei, “Khatemeh” is about a 14-year-old Afghan girl named Khatemeh living in Iran with her family.
She is forced to marry the husband of her late sister who died by suicide, but after a while, she escapes from home to save her life from her husband and her brother’s torture and takes refuge in the Welfare Organization of Shiraz.
2020 has been a particularly good year for documentaries all over the world, as the international political situation along with the pandemic have presented much material for some films. Furthermore, the pandemic essentially prevented the shooting and circulation of feature movies to a large degree, giving much more space than usual for documentaries to shine. Asian cinema responded to the challenge through a number of excellent productions, 15 of which have been introduced as the best.
Other top selected documentaries include “Hong Kong Moments” by Zhou Bing from Hong Kong, “Midnight Traveler” by Hassan Fazili from Afghanistan and “A Thousand Cuts” by Ramona S. Diaz from the Philippines.