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    Directed by

    France, Switzerland


    105 min

    • Farsi


    It took two years for Mehran Tamadon to persuade the four supporters of the Iranian regime to risk taking part in an experiment with him. Now he receives them as guests at his family’s country house to try out something that does not exist in Iran: a pluralistic society. As the women disappear into the guest rooms, the men discuss the advantages and disadvantages of a secular society, the veil, abortion, freedom of the press… The guests not merely outnumber the filmmaker, who is critical of the regime, but are also masters of rhetoric. Again and again, they twist his words and use them against him. His secular society, they argue, is just as ideological as their religious one. The mood is contentious, but there’s also a great deal of communal laughter, prayer and cooking. In the end, the attempt to create a social utopia fails as there are simply too many issues that are non-negotiable. But does that mean that the experiment itself has failed? After all, for a brief time, differing lifestyles and opinions managed to co-exist. A dialogue took place. For the filmmaker, however, there’ll be a high price to pay.


    • Grand Prize - Cinéma du Réel
    • Buyens-Chagoll Prize - Visions du Réel



    Mohammad Reza Jahanpanah
    Mehran Tamadon
    Marie-Hélène Dozo
    Luc Forveille
    Olivier Zuchuat


    Iranian expat documaker brings a European sensibility and sense of humor to a surreal encounter he engineers by inviting four bearded defenders of the Islamic Republic of Iran to debate basic issues with him.

    Deborah Young, The Hollywood Reporter

    Mehran Tamadon

    Mehran Tamadon


    Mehran Tamadon arrived in France at the age of 12, in 1984. He attended the school of Architecture of Paris-La Villette, and received his diploma in 2000. In 1999, he participated in the creation of the review L'Arrosoir devoted to issues of city and land usage. In the year 2000, he returned to Iran for four years and worked as an architect, realizing a house and a building in Tehran. Since 2002, he has given his career a distinctly artistic orientation. During an exhibit of conceptual art at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Tehran, he showed an artistic installation called “From the eyes of a stroller”. He also published two essays in Persian (Moments of agony, 2003 and Friendship, 2005). Then, in 2004 he directed his first medium-length documentary, MOTHERS OF MARTYRS (BEHESHT ZAHRA), presented in numerous international festivals. BASSIDJI (2009), about the defenders of the Islamic republic of Iran, is his first long documentary.