My uncle's film 'Blue Crush' played in Afghanistan a few years ago.. It was so cool to hear about a group of girls who weren't even allowed to go to school, make their way to see this grrl power chick flick.
Perseopolis is worth it. Go see it. Its a simple film, revolving around symmetries of the human condition, pain, and pleasure. Always balancing the dark moment with a lighter one. Its a story about a young girl growing up in the years following the fall of the Shah. She ends up heading off to boarding school, only to return and find the country a kind of hollow place.
My friends from Iran refer to the country they come from as 'Persia'. So I know the game she plays when she is afraid to admit that she was from there. But it is a beautiful place and one day - who knows. Maybe it will be a modern country again. For now. It is cloaked in the veil of fundamentalism - a veil that some use to discover the power of orthodoxy - and others to hide away from the reality of the world.
I wasn't surprised at all in the film, to find the depiction of some of the members of the regime, promoted from without on the basis of obedience and less of skill in administration. Its pretty apparent that, once the Shah fell, nobody really knew what to do.
What it will take, in my view, after seeing this film - is an organic revolution in the country. A revolution led by bloggers and dissidents and people who can identify the elements of Persia that are in fact as interesting, as the concept of old Persia is to everyone. That global interest and introspect alone should be enough to pry open the country and expose its semi-democratic foundation to a model that helps pioneers get elected. The country is worth saving. And so was Marjun.
Too bad she deleted her scene where she almost died. It was the moment when she realized she had to live, in her life. Those moments are important. The shame she must have felt, that she would have died by her own hand - was probably too great for her. But in the end, Marjun befriended everyone. Because, in the end, everyone still feels - somewhere way back - that Persia is a beautiful, exotic and exciting country. The black veil that is now Iran, lifted - the beautiful woman underneath.