Tales of an Island
Dastan hay-e jazireh
A two-part film set on the exclusive Iranian island Kish and produced by the local tourist board. The renowned Iranian film-makers Dariush Mehrjui and Mohsen Makhmalbaf (much of whose work has been screened at the festival in the past) were responsible for directing.Mehrjui's episode is entitled 'Dear Cousin is Lost'. A director is busy shooting a fantasy costume film. The crew is disorganised and the frustrated director passes his time with poetic (day) dreaming in which, at a certain point, a young bride, engaged to one of the actors in his film, is drowned at sea. Then the bride appears in the middle of shooting and takes the actor with her up to heaven.In 'Testing Democracy' by Makhmalbaf and Shahabodin Farokh-yar, we see Makhmalbaf shooting a short film `The Door' by the coast. His friend Shahab comes to visit him with a videocamera. Makhmalbaf, frustrated by the difficult shooting schedule, flees the set and returns with Shahab to Tehran, to video the elections.Both episodes have little to do with each other, apart from the island Kish and the reflexive nature of the narrative: the first is a mysterious, surrealist sketch of the film process vaguely reminiscent of Fellini, while the second is more philosophical and poses questions about the political implications of the use of video in Iran.