MAROONED IN IRAQ
In Iran and Iraq’s postwar years, while Saddam Hussein bombs Iraqi Kurdistan, an old Iranian Kurd singer, accompanied by his musician sons, starts searching for his ex-wife, Hanareh. Hanareh, a female singer, has gone to Kurdistan in Iraq. The film is the story of the band’s journey, joined with their music. It is the story of a nation that has always been wandering. Being so used to war, they take it as a game, and celebrate life with their music. Screened at Cannes in Un Certain Regard sidebar 2002 and at other festivals, winning numerous awards.
Meet the director
Bahman Ghobadi was born in Baneh in 1969, a city in Iranian Kurdistan near the Iraqi border. The Iran-Iraq War forced his family to move to Sanandaj, the capital of Iranian Kurdistan. After high school graduation, Ghobadi moved to Teheran, where he began working as a photographer. He attended Iranian Broadcasting College, but did not graduate. He then worked as assistant director to Abbas Kiarostami on THE WIND WILL CARRY US. After shooting several documentary shorts on Super8, he made his award-winning breakout short LIFE IN FOG 1999. He named his production co. Mij (Fog), which funds and produces Kurdish films, after this film. “Iran has always been a region that cradled a multitude of different ethnic groups, Turkmens, Kurds and Turks, yet their voices are rarely expressed in Iranian cinema,” says Ghobadi. He made the first Iranian Kurdish feature film 2000, A TIME FOR DRUNKEN HORSES, followed by TURTLES CAN FLY (2004), HALF MOON (2006) and NO ONE KNOWS ABOUT PERSIAN CATS (2009), winning numerous international awards, including the Caméra d'Or in Cannes, the Glass Bear in Berlin, two main prizes in San Sebastian, the Index on Censorship award and numerous audience awards worldwide. Bahman Ghobadi has been making Kurdish films for twenty years now, often working with non-actors and laypeople.