Directed by Masoud Bakhshi and produced by Ali Mosaffa, ‘Yalda’ is a joint production of Iran, Switzerland, Germany, France, and Luxembourg.
The 89-minute movie tells the story of Maryam Komijani, a young woman who has been sentenced to death for the murder of her husband.
On Yalda Night, an ancient cultural festive marking the longest night of the year in Iran, she comes to a TV studio to be forgiven by the victim’s only daughter on a live show.
But several incidents during the show and its behind-the-scenes draw the two young women into a challenging situation before the crunch time.
Website of the MOOOV wrote, “During Yalda, the longest night of the year during which the start of winter is celebrated, there is a reality show on television where participants need to forgive someone for a great injustice that has been done to them. There is a lot on the line: Maryam, a young woman, has been sentenced to death for the murder of her husband, Nasser. Mona, Nasser’s daughter from a previous marriage, has to decide whether she can forgive her. When the two start discussing their past, it appears there are always more sides to a story and that forgiving someone is not always easy. The viewers at home have to send in their vote on Maryam’s fate.
Fascinated by the complexities of modern-day Iran, Massoud Bakhshi made a couple of documentaries in which he meets different women who murdered their husbands. These stories haunted him. Based on these stories, Bakhshi made a film that is a satire on the media and television culture, but most of all is an indictment against the society dominated by men and the limitations the women are confronted with, no matter their background. The lively, modern Iranian identity shows a stark contrast in Yalda to the persistent conservative organization.”
Sadaf Asgari, Behnaz Jafari, Babak Karimi, Faqiheh Soltani, Fereshteh Sadr-Orafaee, Bahram Afshar, and Fereshteh Hosseini are among the cast members of the flick.
The film has so far competed at a good number of global events, including the Taipei Golden Horse Film Festival in Taiwan and the International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights in Switzerland and the Sundance Film Festival in the US, where it won the Grand Jury Award.
‘Yalda’ has formerly received the Special Mention for best screenplay at the Sofia International Film Festival in Bulgaria and Best Director award at the Antalya Film Festival in Turkey.
It won a nomination at the 26th Lumieres Awards in France, has been successful at the box office of several countries in Europe, and was honored by France’s Elle Magazine.
ifilm English TV has interviewed the flick's director, actor Karimi and actress Jafari. Click here to watch the report.
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