Belgrade ethnological film festival picks docs from Iran
Art and Experience:
The Iranian documentary films “The Snow Calls”, “And the Sky Was Created” and “Balora” will be competing in the 30th International Festival of Ethnological Film in Belgrade.
The festival will take place at the Ethnographic Museum in the Serbian capital of Belgrade from October 4 to 8.
Directed by Marjan Khosravi, “The Snow Calls” is about Mina, who has just one more chance after bearing three daughters. Her next child has to be a boy or her husband will marry another woman. That’s the tradition.
The very pregnant Mina and her family live in southwestern Iran, where the rules of the Bakhtiari tribe apply. This time, the expectant mother decides not to have an ultrasound scan, for fear of the result and the gossip that would ensue. She is already under enough pressure from her in-laws, although she still has people on her side, too.
As the snowdrifts become deeper, and the outside door will barely open anymore, the atmosphere in the household becomes increasingly oppressive. Will there be a happy ending with the birth of a son, or are we watching a life that is about to fall apart?
The film was selected as best feature at the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival in Missoula in the northwestern U.S. state of Montana.
Documentarian Darya Majlesi will screen her latest short “And the Sky Was Created” at the festival.
This film portrays the mystifying relationship between nature and humans through centuries. The story is based on traditions and ceremonies that have been performed since the very early stages of civilization until now in a different form.
The essence of this relationship has changed from a very respectful and fearful approach to a destructive and ignorant one. The moderate conditions in those early years have now become dangerous and unpredictable. Consequently, the film observes this process by both images of nature and human socio-cultural legacies.
In his documentary “Balora”, director Abdolqader Khaledi centers on Balora, an old song that used to be performed by ethnic Iranians especially by the Kurdish people.
In times when there were no means of mass communication, this song was also used to communicate with other people in the mountains.
Balora has had aspects of romance, satire and humor, as well as a description of the death of a hero, the extent of which depends on the taste, imagination and skill of the poet, since there is a strong element of improvisation.
Performing it requires special skills because it requires the coordination of the fingers and proper breathing while singing. Through this song, Kurdish women have cried out their desires, aspirations and sufferings not in a quiet and secret voice but in a loud and free voice in the mountains. This film reflects some of these cries.