Posts Tagged ‘Docunight’

Docunight #54 [Penn State]: Ali Aqa (reminder)

Date: Wednesday, March 13, 2019 at 7 PM – 9 PM
Location: Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, State College, Pennsylvania 16802

Ali Aqa
Directed by Kamran Heidari
2017 / 81 min
Persian with English Subtitles, Free Admission

 

Seventy-year-old Ali Aqa’s large, fleshy hands shake as he helps a newborn pigeon chick hatch. His pigeons, which he keeps on the roof of his home, mean everything to him. He calls his favorite white pigeon “sweetheart” and even takes her into his bedroom. His wife is less than enthusiastic about this, and has good cause to be jealous. He may be the embodiment of tenderness when dealing with his beloved pigeons, but this cantankerous old man is a trial for the human beings around him, as we soon learn from this dynamic portrait, shot up close to its protagonist. He orders his wife and son around and is consumed by paranoia. When it goes too far, even the film’s director Kamran Heidari abandons his strictly neutral position as an observer. The pigeons are Ali’s way of escaping reality—in particular, an impending hospitalization—but this proves ever more difficult. Ali Aqa’s small-scale, everyday story encompasses a great human drama: how do we accept the inevitable?

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Docunight #54 [Penn State]: Ali Aqa

Date: Wednesday, March 13, 2019 at 7 PM – 9 PM
Location: Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, State College, Pennsylvania 16802

Ali Aqa
Directed by Kamran Heidari
2017 / 81 min
Persian with English Subtitles, Free Admission

 

Seventy-year-old Ali Aqa’s large, fleshy hands shake as he helps a newborn pigeon chick hatch. His pigeons, which he keeps on the roof of his home, mean everything to him. He calls his favorite white pigeon “sweetheart” and even takes her into his bedroom. His wife is less than enthusiastic about this, and has good cause to be jealous. He may be the embodiment of tenderness when dealing with his beloved pigeons, but this cantankerous old man is a trial for the human beings around him, as we soon learn from this dynamic portrait, shot up close to its protagonist. He orders his wife and son around and is consumed by paranoia. When it goes too far, even the film’s director Kamran Heidari abandons his strictly neutral position as an observer. The pigeons are Ali’s way of escaping reality—in particular, an impending hospitalization—but this proves ever more difficult. Ali Aqa’s small-scale, everyday story encompasses a great human drama: how do we accept the inevitable?

About Docunight

Docunight #53 [Penn State]: MAHAK – A World She Founded (reminder)

Date: Wednesday, February 6, 2019 at 7 PM – 8 PM
Location: Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, State College, Pennsylvania 16802

MAHAK – A World She Founded
From “Karestan” Documentary Film Series
Director: Mohsen Abdolvahab
2017 / 57 min
Persian with English Subtitles, Free Admission

The life of Saideh Ghods changed completely when her two-year-old daughter Kiana was diagnosed with cancer. As she confronted her daughter’s suffering, she became aware of the suffering of so many impoverished families in hospital corridors around the country who were dealing with children afflicted by cancer. When, due to the doctors’ timely diagnosis, Kiana was on the path to a full recovery, Saideh Ghods resolved to prevent the unnecessary deaths of children with cancer caused by lack of access to therapeutic facilities or insufficient financial resources.

Ghods founded MAHAK over 25 years ago. It quickly gained fame and support throughout Iran. Today it is one of the most highly functioning and trusted charities in the country. Countless children have been helped and saved.  A few years after founding MAHAK, Ghods, along with a group of Iranian philanthropists, established a fully equipped hospital in Tehran that specializes in treating children with cancer.

About Docunight

Docunight #53 [Penn State]: MAHAK – A World She Founded

Date: Wednesday, February 6, 2019 at 7 PM – 8 PM
Location: Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, State College, Pennsylvania 16802

MAHAK – A World She Founded
From “Karestan” Documentary Film Series
Director: Mohsen Abdolvahab
2017 / 57 min
Persian with English Subtitles, Free Admission

The life of Saideh Ghods changed completely when her two-year-old daughter Kiana was diagnosed with cancer. As she confronted her daughter’s suffering, she became aware of the suffering of so many impoverished families in hospital corridors around the country who were dealing with children afflicted by cancer. When, due to the doctors’ timely diagnosis, Kiana was on the path to a full recovery, Saideh Ghods resolved to prevent the unnecessary deaths of children with cancer caused by lack of access to therapeutic facilities or insufficient financial resources.

Ghods founded MAHAK over 25 years ago. It quickly gained fame and support throughout Iran. Today it is one of the most highly functioning and trusted charities in the country. Countless children have been helped and saved.  A few years after founding MAHAK, Ghods, along with a group of Iranian philanthropists, established a fully equipped hospital in Tehran that specializes in treating children with cancer.

About Docunight

Docunight #52 [Penn State]: Death and the Judge

Date: Wednesday, December 5, 2018 at 7 PM – 9 PM
Location: Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, State College, Pennsylvania 16802

Death and the Judge

Director: Hassan Khademi
2018 / 53 min
Persian with English Subtitles, Free Admission

With more than 4000 death sentences in 45 years, judge Azizmohammadi not only has a record in issuing death sentences in Iran, but also in the world. “Death and the Judge” is a powerful documentary about Iran’s most famed and feared criminal judge, and it offers an intimate yet chilling portrait into the professional and private lives of this criminal judge.

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Docunight #51 [Penn State]: Mother of the Earth [New Date]

Date: Wednesday, November 7, 2018 at 7 PM – 9 PM
Location: Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, State College, Pennsylvania 16802

این برنامه با همکاری کتاب‌خانه‌ی پن‌ستیت برگزار می‌شود، در صورت عدم استقبال از این برنامه امکان ادامه‌ی این همکاری .ممکن نخواهد بود


Mother of the Earth
Does the Earth need us? or is it us who need Clean Water and Clean Soil?
From “Karestan” documentary film series
Director: Mahnaz Afzali
Artistic Consultant: Rakhshan Banietemad
Producer: Mojtaba Mirtahmasb
2017 / 52 mins
Persian with English Subtitles

This documentary takes a brief look at Hayedeh Shirzadi and her husband’s shared life, love and work and their attempt to put an end to the dumping and burial of urban garbage. Due to their hard work and ingenuity, 100% of the city of Kermanshah’s garbage is now recycled and the biowaste is made into organic fertilizers.

Shirzadi studied recycling in Germany. She returned to Iran in order to clean up the environment, to stop the destruction of arable land, and to curb air and water pollution. Her first attempts were ignored but she kept at the local government until she was successful in getting the job of waste manager, first in her birthplace Gilane Gharb and then in Kermanshah. She also traveled around Iran and helped establish a recycling center in many cities. Today Kermanshah’s waste is all recycled and converted into useful products.

She is an energetic leader and the fate of the earth is her main concern. Shirzadi has recently launched a site for recycling construction rubble.

The Karestan Documentary Series features stories about Iranian entrepreneurs of both genders who have taken personal risks, and through their creativity and innovative approach, became an instrument of change in their own as well as the lives of others. Their impact, even if confined to a small scale or limited to a geographical area, has inspired big change and progress.

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Docunight #50 [Penn State]: Poets of Life

Date: Wednesday, October 3, 2018 at 7 PM – 9 PM
Location: W315 Pattee Library, State College, Pennsylvania 16802

Artistic Consultant: Rakhshan Banietemad
Producer: Mojtaba Mirtahmasb
Director: Shirin Barghnavard
Artistic Consultant: Rakhshan Banietemad
Producer: Mojtaba Mirtahmasb
2017 / 73 mins
Persian with English Subtitles
ADMISSION IS FREE

Shirin Parsi is a rice farmer, but not an ordinary one. After receiving a BA in French literature from the University of Paris, she returned to Iran and decided not to live in the megapolis capital, Tehran. Her husband had inherited land in Shanderman, a village near the Caspian Sea, so they moved there and took up rice farming. The Parsi family – including their two sons, who have stayed to farm with their parents – has instituted innovations in rice production. They promote sustainable farming and refrain from using chemical pesticides and fertilizers. In a region where more and more farmers are selling their farms at very cheap prices to developers, the Parsis produce 100% organic rice. Shirin and her family have chosen an exemplary lifestyle which is rich in indigenous values. In addition to rice farming, she spends time as a social activist and volunteers with several local NGOs. She is especially active in women’s groups where she focuses on raising awareness. This film follows Shirin preparing the rice paddies until the rice harvest, as well as showing her social activities, as she attempts to bring about social and environmental change.

Karestan documentary films series are the story of Iranian entrepreneurs (men and women) who, both in big and small terms, take risks and change their lives and those of others by creating innovative ideas and values. Their impact, although confined to a small scale and within a limited and local geography, will bring about an inspiring atmosphere for change.

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Docunight #42 [Penn State]: Iran’s Arrow

Date: Wednesday, October 4, 2017 at 7 PM – 9 PM
Location: Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, State College, Pennsylvania 16802

IRAN’S ARROW
The Rise and Fall of Paykan

Directed by: Shahin Armin, Sohrab Daryabandari
2016 / 78 min
Persian with English subtitles

On the spring of 1967, when the first Paykan rolled off the assembly line on an outskirt of Tehran, no one thought this car would be produced for 38 years, or that it could have such an impact on a whole nation.

Iran’s Arrow features numerous talking heads who share a common interest for the country’s emblematic car, ranging from historical to sociological analyses, from technical to artistic expertise and from sheer passion to a complicated love-hate relationship. The film uses rare archival footage, as well as a large collection of vintage photos and imagery, to document the history of Paykan, the way it’s been perceived throughout the years, and its links with Iran’s major historical and sociological landmarks, such as the White Revolution (1963), the industrialization, the rise of the middle class, the Islamic Revolution (1979), the Iran-Iraq War (1980-1988), and social economic mutations of the post-war era.

Older Paykan owners – including official and unofficial taxi drivers- testify of the fundamental role it played and still plays in their everyday life, as a means of transport, a source of income, and sometimes an achievement in itself. A number of Paykan enthusiasts, most of them from the younger generation, are being interviewed about their very special relationship with the car they grew up with. The film also documents the decline of the Paykan, while showing how it is still very much alive in the culture and memory of the country. Interviews are also conducted with artists who use Paykan as a medium or the subject of their art.

Shahin Armin is an automotive design-engineer and a lifelong Paykan expert. Born in Tehran and a car enthusiast before he could even talk or walk, he moved to the US in his twenties and worked in the US car industry for 13 years (Chrysler, Michigan and Honda America, Ohio).
Although he worked on the design of modern and sophisticated cars, he could never get the Paykan out of his head. In 2009 he started thePaykanHunter.com blog, thus initiating an extensive research about Iran’s emblematic car. Upon returning to Tehran in 2012, he co-curated two Paykan themed art exhibitions exhibiting work from prominent Iranian artists.
Iran’s Arrow is a result of his many years of extensive research into the history of this car, his experiences interacting with his fellow Paykan enthusiasts, and his comprehensive understanding of the car’s impact on Iranian society.

Sohrab Daryabandari is a Tehran based professional photographer and filmmaker whose 25 year-long careers has been stretching between almost all areas of expertise in analog and digital photography. His work has ranged from journalistic, commercial, and artistic to architectural and industrial photography, which later lead him to edit as well as industrial, artistic and documentary filmmaking.
His photographic work, which was regularly exhibited and published in Iran and Europe, has later been influencing his filmmaking, notably in Dammam (Iran, 2003) and Sharveh (Iran, 2005), his two documentaries on ethnic Iranian music.
Iran’s Arrow owes him its remarkable photography, the minute treatment of archive material, and its overall filmmaking and editing quality, considering the conditions of production and the limited resources.

Docunight #38 [State College]: Plane Grove

Plane Grove
Directed by Hadi Afarideh
2014 / 67 min
Persian with English Subtitles

This is the story and history of the longest street in the Middle East that expands 17 km from the south to the northern parts of the city of Tehran.This is also the largest plane grove, found in these parts with the plane trees lining and adorning the street all along its corridor.
This street holds the collective memory of the Iranian people and has been witness to the country’s most important social and political upheaval taking place in and around it. The street has gone through many reformations in step with the changes in the society; mass increase in population, changes in the governmental systems and social changes, to name a few, have all left their marks along the side of Vali e Asr Street. The street itself has changed names in line with the times, from Pahlavi to Mossadegh to the current Vali e Asr.

This engaging film is not only nostalgic in many ways, but educational as it provides a glimpse into Iran’s past century.

Date: Wednesday, June 7 at 7 PM – 9 PM
Location: Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, State College, Pennsylvania 16802

Docunight #37 [Penn State]: The Shah of Iran’s Ultimate Party

Decadence and Downfall: The Shah of Iran’s Ultimate Party
Directed by Hassan Amini
2016 / 75 min
English / Persian with English Subtitles

 

In 1971, the Shah of Iran, the self-proclaimed ‘king of kings’, celebrated 2,500 years of the Persian monarchy by throwing the greatest party in history. Money was no object – a lavish tent city, using 37km of silk, was erected in a specially created oasis. The world’s top restaurant at the time, Maxim’s, closed its doors for two weeks to cater the event, a five-course banquet served to over sixty of the world’s kings, queens and presidents, and washed down with some of the rarest wines known to man. Over a decadent five-day period, guests were treated to a pageant of thousands of soldiers dressed in ancient Persian costume, a ‘son et Lumiere’ at the foot of Darius the Great’s temple, and the opening of the Azadi Tower in Tehran, designed to honor the Shah himself. Every party leaves a few hangovers. This one left a country reeling, never to recover. It crystallized the opposition, led by the Ayatollah Khomeini. More than any other event, this party marked the break between the king of kings and the people of Iran he reigned over.

Date: Wednesday, May 3 at 7 PM – 9 PM ET.
Address: Foster Auditorium, Paterno Library, State College, PA 16801.

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