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The 1st London Iranian Film Festival set to open Nov19

The 1st London Iranian Film Festival has created many opportunities for emerging and established filmmakers to exhibit their work representing Iranian culture. In addition, it will introduce Iranian cinema to new audiences, fulfilling both an entertainment and educational function.

The Festival aims to produce the best Iranian film programme in UK, attracting as many people as possible to view Iranian cinema. Regardless of who you are, where you come from and what you do, this is a cultural event where you can enjoy and exchange opinions.
On November 19th, 2010, 1st London Iranian Film Festival will have its opening night at a prestigious London venue, which will be attended by a wide array of industry members. Live entertainment will include traditional music followed by film screenings to introduce new audiences to Iranian culture.
For the remainder of the festival, there will be activities to complement the screenings throughout London. These activities will include Q&A sessions, seminars, exhibitions, as well as the latest films from Iran.
The 1st London Iranian Film Festival will provide a base to experience, enjoy, learn and discover!

FRIDAY 19th NOVEMBER - Opening night


TRADITIONAL IRANIAN MUSIC
20:00-21:00 h | Apollo Cinema
THE WHITE MEADOW
21:00- 23:15 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Mohammad Rasoulof, Iran, 2009, 132 mins, Farsi with English subtitles


Mohammad Rasoulof expertly weaves together poetry, mythology, metaphor, and the absurd to tell the fable-like story of Rahmat, who sails from island to island on salt-filled Lake Urmia to collect tears as people unburden their sorrows into glass jars. It is said that the tears become pearls as their sins are atoned for, but Rahmat's intentions remain an enigma.
SATURDAY 20th NOVEMBER
SOLITUDE
16:00- 17:30 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Mehrdad Sheikhan, Iran, 2008, 10 mins, no dialogue



A stone colossus has lived a lonely life on his barren planet for thousands of years. Worn out by his solitude, he decides to change his fate.
AND LIFE WENT ON
16:00- 17:30 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Maryam Mohajer, UK, 2007, 6 mins, Farsi with English subtitles


Tehran. The Iran-Iraq war. The wail of a siren sends all the residents of a building rushing down to the shelter in the basement. What happens in this enclosed space with everyone waiting? You will be surprised...
DOOMSDAY MACHINE
16:00- 17:30 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Soudabeh Moradian, Iran, 2010, 53 mins, Farsi with English subtitles


This documentary is about mentally disabled war veterans of the Iran-Iraq war (1980-1988) suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in one of the permanent sanatoriums in Tehran, Iran. One of them, "Mahmood", is under the illusion that he has built a "Doomsday Machine" which can destroy the world by pressing a button.

Warning: This film contains disturbing images of corpses which may be unsuitable for some audiences.
THE DAY OF CREATION
17:45- 19:15 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Soudabeh Mojaveri, Iran, 2008, 22 mins, Farsi with English subtitles


The first day of spring in Iran and Persian speaking countries - Norooz - also marks the beginning of the New Year, which in Zoroastrian tradition coincides with the six days of creation.

This experimental film narrates related truths and myths, forgotten in modern times, through a series of original miniature paintings, architecture, and abstract forms of modern life.
CYANOSIS
17:45- 19:15 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Rokhsareh Ghaemmaghami, Iran, 2007, 32 mins, Farsi with English subtitles


Jamshid Aminfar is a painter working in the streets of Tehran; he is determined to pursue the art he loves despite constant interruption and hassle from officials and the public. With the help of his friends, he is preparing for an exhibition. At the same time he falls in love.

Complete with 10 minutes of animated sequences, this documentary film illustrates how Aminfar's paintings shed light on his inner life, dreams, nightmares and memories.
DELUSIVE SOUND
17:45- 19:15 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Kereshmeh Afsari, Iran, 2006, 22 mins, Farsi with English subtitles


Hessam, divorced for four years because of the baby he didn't want, must now visit his daughter, who doesn't know that Hessam is her father. Destiny, however, has another way...
PENNILESS
19:30- 21:25 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Ziba Shahpouri, Iran, 2009, 106 mins, Farsi with English subtitles


Iraj is very pleased with himself: his looks, his job, his wife, his life and the money he earns. Therefore loosing his job strikes a devastating blow to his pride. As being penniless is a disgrace for Iraj, he does whatever he can to hide it from everybody, including his wife.
ABOUT ELLY
21:30- 23:30 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Asghar Farhadi, Iran, 2009, 116 mins, Farsi and German with English subtitles


Award-winning director Asghar Farhadi weaves a compelling story of university friends who organise a three-day holiday on the Caspian Sea, with a special guest. But the joyful atmosphere evaporates, causing panic, as the friends discover she has mysteriously disappeared without a trace.
SUNDAY 21st NOVEMBER
MELODY OF BIRTH
16:30- 17:50 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Ali Attar, Iran, 2010, 6 mins, no dialogue



This short film is a poetic celebration of birth, relating a dream-like state of a woman giving birth to the omnipresent rhythm of the universe.
A GOOD TIME FOR TRAGEDY
16:30- 17:50 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Nasser Saffarian, Iran, 2006, 57 mins, Farsi with English subtitles

A documentary about the life and works of Ahmad-Reza Ahmadi, an Iranian poet.
METEOR SHOWER
18:00- 19:20 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Makan Ashouri, Iran, 2007, 21 mins, Farsi with English subtitles


In this short film about a man who wishes that his wife dies, the director takes us on a journey bordering on the limit between dreams and reality. Accompanied by a mesmerising music soundtrack, the man tells us about his wish and actions to make his wife disappear from his life. After some unsuccessful attempts he finally manages to liberate himself from his wife, but at a cost.
PRESENCE
18:00- 19:20 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Amir Hossein Birjandi, Iran, 2008, 20 mins, Farsi with English subtitles


After travelling to a quiet hotel to write his book, an un-known author discovers that he is in fact staying next to a celebrated author. His curiosity leads to an intriguing discovery.
MINUS
18:00- 19:20 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Kazem Mollaie, Iran, 2009, 23 mins, no dialogue



'Minus' is an experimental narrative film that rejects the confines of a specific geography, language, or time. The events take place at a razor producing company where a young, simple man works. He possesses the special ability of telepathy, which allows him to read people's minds. One day, alarmed by one of his predictions he decides to take action.
BENEATH THE EYELID
19:30- 20:50 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Bijan Mirbagheri, Iran, 2007, 28 mins, Farsi with English subtitles


A girl and a boy wake up one morning unable to remember who they are, where they come from and how they got there.
WINDOW
19:30- 20:50 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Mousa Alijani, Iran, 2006, 25 mins, Farsi with English subtitles


The relationship between an old woman and her daughter is explored. Sickened and depressed by an illness, the woman is tended to by her daughter, who plays the piano to brighten up the days for her mother.
MY TREE
19:30- 20:50 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Sara Siadat Nejad, Iran, 2008, 6 mins, no dialogue



A young artist attempts to draw leaves on the branches of a thin and withered tree, the last one on the seashore. When a woodcutter fells the tree, she must navigate the line between reality and fantasy.
TONGUE OF THE HIDDEN
19:30- 20:50 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by David Alexander Anderson, Calligraphy, translation and narration by Jila Peacock, UK, 2007, 5 mins, English

The poet Hafez, also known as the Teller of Secrets, used the language of human love and the metaphors of wine and drunkenness to describe his desire for the Divine and intoxication with the mysteries of the Universe. The landscapes and characters from the film are all constructed of Persian calligraphy.
BEFORE THE BURIAL
21:00- 22:45 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Behnam Behzadi, Iran, 2008, 104 mins, Farsi with English subtitles


Depressed and isolated after having spent twenty years in prison for his political activities, Siamak is consumed by regret for the life he lost as a promising medical student. He thus decides to take his own life on his 40th birthday, but not before taking care of some unfinished business.
MONDAY 22nd NOVEMBER
THE ACCORDION
19:30- 20:50 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Jafar Panahi, Iran, France, Brazil, Italy, Switzerland, 2010, 9 mins, Farsi with English subtitles

This short film shot in Tehran, recounts the adventures of two young street musicians who play the accordion and tablas in order to earn their living. One day, while playing next to a mosque, their accordion is confiscated as a result of an incident.
ROUGH CUT
19:30- 20:50 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Firouzeh Khosrovani, Iran, 2007, 22 mins, English and Farsi with subtitles


Rough Cut is a short documentary reflecting on cultural traditions in Iran, using inscriptions on the bodies of women to convey its message.

In the windows of Tehran clothing shops, passersby stop to observe the displays. Gradually, the onlookers meet the stares of the grotesquely mutilated mannequins, which have been perverted into disturbing reproductions of the female figure. The mannequins, redefined according to the country's law, function as a metaphor for Iranian women's veiled and covered bodies.
MY CITY PIZZA
19:30- 20:50 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Ala Mohseni, Iran/UK, 2008, 26 mins, Farsi



This amusing, fast-paced documentary about eating habits in modern Tehran offers a kaleidoscopic view of the Iranian society. In the film Iranians from all walks of life divulge their identities via their standpoints regarding the pizza in the capital.
PEARLS ON THE OCEAN FLOOR
21:00- 22:30 h | Apollo Cinema
Directed by Robert Adanto, US, 2010, 77 mins, English, Farsi, German


Pearls on the Ocean Floor is a thought-provoking documentary examining the lives of Iranian female artists living and working in and outside the Islamic Republic.

This incisive study, featuring interviews with artists Shadi Ghadirian, Shirin Neshat, and Parastou Forouhar, captures the uncertainty of this momentous time in Iran's history.

Speaking with grace and honesty, these women express what is seldom seen in the western media: unique individual perspectives regarding issues of identity, gender, and the the role that art plays in challenging the traditional stereotypes often associated with women in Iran.
WEDNESDAY 24th NOVEMBER
THE BALL AND ALLEY
18:00- 19:30 h | Ciné Lumière
Directed by Yahya Ghadamgahi, Iran, 2010, 4 mins, no dialogue



An eight year-old boy is playing with a ball in a tranquil alley waiting for someone to join him. Finally, an old man passes by.
TINAR
18:00- 19:30 h | Ciné Lumière
Directed by Mahdi Moniri, Iran, 2009, 72 mins, Farsi with English subtitles



Ten-year-old cowherd Ghasem lives and labours in the foothills of the majestic mountains, not far from the Iranian city of Babol. His mother is dead and his only companions are the cows which he lovingly tenders. Back home his father and stepmother give him a rough time. In his sensitively constructed and visually sophisticated portrait, Iranian director Mahdi Moniri presents a boy who has been deprived of carefree childhood.
NETWORKING EVENT
19:30- 20:30 h | Ciné Lumière


TEHRAN GALLERY
20:30- 22:30 h | Ciné Lumière
Directed by Hossein Shams, Iran, 2010, 15 mins, Farsi with English subtitles


A man whose hands and clothes are covered in blood gets out of a building and runs away in his car. His path is crossed by a girl who is the first link in an interweaving swirl of shady Tehran characters.
THE GLASS HOUSE
20:30- 22:30 h | Ciné Lumière
Directed by Hamid Rahmanian, Iran-US, 2008, 92 mins, Farsi with English subtitles


The Glass House is a unique insight into Iran through the story of a day centre for young women, which aims to help troubled girls from the margins of the society.

The film takes us on a tour of the underclass of Iran with these girls' brave and defiant stories of abandonment, drug addiction, sexual abuse, and hatred.

As Hamid Rahmanian follows these young women, their shared spirit and mutual support shine through in this surprising and illuminating documentary.
THURSDAY 25th NOVEMBER
BIRTHDAY
20:00- 20:45 h | Shortwave Cinema
Directed by Pasha Rostami, Iran, 2010, 11 mins, Farsi with English subtitles


A wife prepares a birthday cake for her husband while he reads a newspaper. His question about a man in the paper unsettles her and she attempts to get rid of the newspaper.
THE OLD MAN AND THE RAIL
20:00- 20:45 h | Shortwave Cinema
Directed by Panahbarkhoda Rezaee, Iran, 2007, 10 mins, Farsi with English subtitles

An old man waits for the return of his son at a remote railway station.
BLUETOOTH
20:00- 20:45 h | Shortwave Cinema
Directed by Houman Seyedi, Iran, 2006, 21 mins, Farsi with English subtitles


The women's water polo team from Mashhad city has come to Tehran. After the match, someone films the captain of the team with a mobile phone while she's changing in the locker room. Alarmed, the organisers try to stop the footage spreading around via bluetooth.
OLD MEN DON'T DIE
21:15- 22:05 h | Shortwave Cinema
Directed by Reza Jamali, Iran, 2008, 11 mins, Farsi with English subtitles


An old man is convinced that the angel of death has abandoned his village and attempts to take matters into his own hands.
BETWEEN 2 DREAMS
21:15- 22:05 h | Shortwave Cinema
Directed by Omid Abdollahi, Iran, 2008, 9 mins, Farsi with English subtitles

In the dead of night, a young woman turns to her neighbour in desperate need of help for with her abortion. The neighbour finally agrees. However...
KHODA
22:20- 23:10 h | Shortwave Cinema
Directed by Reza Dolatabadi, UK, 2008, 5 mins, no dialogues


What if you watched a film and whenever you paused it, you found yourself admiring a painting?

This idea inspired Reza Dolatabadi to make Khoda. Over two years, 6000 paintings were painstakingly produced to create a five-minute film that would satisfy Dolatabadi's exacting personal standards.

Khoda is a psychological thriller; a student project which was seen as a 'mission impossible' by many people but eventually proved possible!
MINUS
22:20- 23:10 h | Shortwave Cinema
Directed by Kazem Mollaie, Iran, 2009, 23 mins, no dialogue


'Minus' is an experimental narrative film that rejects the confines of a specific geography, language, or time. The events take place at a razor producing company where a young, simple man works. He possesses the special ability of telepathy, which allows him to read people's minds. One day, alarmed by one of his predictions he decides to take action.

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