Monday, June 12, 2006

SIFF 2006: When Fish Fall In Love

When Fish Fall In Love was the last film of the festival for me this year, and the second Iranian movie. I liked this one much better than Nightly Song of the Travellers. First, it had a plot. Second, it was a great human story of hope and the decisions we make affecting the outcome of our lives, and not necessarily in a good way.

The movie is obstensibly about Aziz, an architect who comes back to his hometown to find the house he still technically inhabited by four independent women who run a restaurant there. One of them happens to be his former flame, who is the de facto ringleader of the bunch.

What makes this movie remarkable is that the women are very independent, especially given Iranian society and its attitudes towards women. They may wear birqas, but they smoke cigarettes and have a very pragmatic approach, and the ringleader don't take no guff either.

It shapes up like a traditional romantic comedy, but the ending is anything but. There are just as many unresolved plotlines at the conclusion as there are at the beginning, and although it bothered me a little (I want to know what happened!) upon further reflection it actually worked very well.

The other great thing was the food - the food itself was almost another character, and it worked excpetionally well for a movie that took place largely at two different restaurants.

Anyway, this was easily my favorite film of the festival this year.

1 comment:

Liz said...

Not so minor correction - they wear head scarves, not birqas. The movie also show's the woment fearlessly moving in men's circles, like smoke shops and telling them off publically and forcing them to re-define what it means to be a man, and in particular a man in love.