Filmfest 2016

German Age Rating

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Ayoub is a young boy in a Kurdish village near the Iraqi border. He works at the bazaar along with his little sister. When his father dies, he has to take care of his three sisters and sick brother, Madi, who needs surgery, or he won’t live longer than seven to eight months. Ayoub tries to smuggle contraband into Iraq by mule in an attempt to raise money for Madi’s operation, but he doesn’t get paid. He gets a second chance to smuggle goods using a mule his uncle lends him, who has a broken arm. Ayoub’s sister Rojin marries a suitor living in a village on the border of Iraq on the condition that he smuggle Madi into Iraq for his operation. But Ayoub is against it. Won the Camera d’Or and FIPRESCI Award at Cannes Film Festival 2000, screened at numerous international festivals and won many prizes.

tags: Work, Family, Childhood, Feature film

Cast: Ayoub Ahmadi, Rojin Ekhtiardini, Ameneh Ekhtiardini, Kolsoum Ekhtiardini


Screenplay: Bahman Ghobadi

Director of Photography: Saed Nikzat

Film Editor: Samad Tavazoei

Composer: Hossein Alizadeh

Sound: Morteza Dehnavi, Mehdi Darabi

Producer: Bahman Ghobadi

Production Company: Mij Film Co

World Sales: MK2 S.A.

Director: Bahman Ghobadi


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.