Tuesday, 29 August
French Cultural Centre presents:
Tangier, the Burners’ Dream / Tanger le reve des bruleurs
Dir: Leila Kilani / France 2003 / 54 min
Tangier is overlooking the straight of Gibraltar where the opposite coast, a door to Europe is always visible. In May 1991, Spain in concert with the rest of the Schengen states, imposed a visa to Moroccans going through its frontiers. Ever since there has been a continuous flow of candidates to a clandestine crossing - Moroccans, Malians, Senegalese, Mauritanians, and other Africans. Moroccans call them in their dialect herraguas, " burners ", the burner being someone ready to accept anything in exchange for going away, a person ready to burn his identification papers and in a sense ready to burn his identity so that there is no coming back. This documentary follows the adventures of three burners, Rhimo, Denis, and Azîz, their life or rather their survival.
19:00 - Films by Moslem Mansouri
Moslem Mansouri was born in Iran in 1964. Because of his political views against the tyrannical regime of Iran, he was arrested and imprisoned in 1981 for two years. He began working in Iranian cinema magazines in 1991 and published a book, "Cinema and Literature". In the same year he studied film studies in the Faculty of Art at Azad University. From 1994 to 1998, Mansouri, under the pretext of media work, and outside the control of the Iranian regime, secretly produced eight documentary films about the lives of the people in the theocratic rule of Iran.
NB! Introduction by Djavad Dadsetan.
Iran - USA 2002 / 45 min
Twenty kilometres outside of Tehran is the village of Khosro. There you will find a group of people, led by bricklayer Ail Matini, making 8mm movies in a primitive, yet innovative way. Defying government control, Mr. Matini has written 110 books and has made 18 films, distributing them within the premises of the surrounding villages.
In 1992, Mr. Matini and his group were arrested by government forces and sent to prison. Months later they were released on the condition that they make no more films, and the villagers were forced to sign documents saying that they would not associate with the filmmakers. Despite this, the group took the risk of making one more film so that their process could be documented by director Moslem Mansouri.
Iran - USA 2002 / 34 min
This stark portrayal of a refugee community hell takes the audience to a near-graveyard of humanity. The victims that Mansouri’s documentary shows us are displaced refugees who fled their cities during the 1979 Revolution and the Iran - Iraq war, who find themselves in a no-mans-land of iniquity where their poverty and starvation is ignored by the government and silenced by an underhand authority. This desperate exposé of a neighbourhood in North West Tehran, builds a harrowing portrait of a community waiting for death to relieve them of an endless existence in a desperate vacuum.
Iran – USA 2002 / 33 min
Prostitution in Iran sounds like an anomaly, but is a significant social problem for those pushed to the poverty line through fate, social structures and gender related discrimination. Distressingly, prostitution has become an option for women on all sides of the societal spectrum and Moslem Mansouri's "Epitaph" leads a frank discussion on the desperation that pushes these Islamic women beyond the boundary. Startlingly we learn that prostitution has transcended its traditional frontiers and married women, as well as, divorcees, widows, children and university students, see it as their only option for survival. Most provocative in Mansouri’s film is the description of how authorities, such as the police, torture the prostitutes, lash them, beat them until their limbs break and put them in solitary confinement.