Directed by Jafar Panahi • 2011 • Iran
Starring Jafar Panahi
The first work fearless auteur Jafar Panahi made after being officially banned from filmmaking by the Iranian government, this clandestine documentary—shot partially on an iPhone and smuggled into France in a cake for a last-minute submission to Cannes—depicts the day-to-day life of the acclaimed director during his house arrest in his Tehran apartment. While appealing his sentence, Panahi is seen talking to his family and lawyer on the phone, discussing his plight with codirector Mojtaba Mirtahmasb, and reflecting on the meaning of the art of filmmaking. What emerges from this intimate self-portrait is a by turns humorous, moving, and defiant statement of creative resilience in the face of oppression.