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EARTH AND ASHES

France / Afghanistan, 2004 (MIFF 2005, Homelands Now: The Middle East in Focus)

Director: Atiq Rahimi

Dastaguir and his spirited young grandson, Yassin, wait at a dusty roadside junction in a lonely desert landscape. They wait for a truck that will take them to the remote mine where the old man's son works. He is honour-bound to take the devastating news to his son that their village has been bombed and burnt to the ground, killing his wife and the rest of his family. Dastaguir is caught between his duty to tell and his fear that the news will drive his son to take his own life. Meanwhile, Yassin, deafened by the bombs that ravaged his village, is convinced that the tanks have taken the voices of the people around him. The pair encounters a small cast of enigmatic fellow survivors, the lives of each shaped by the devastation and melancholy of war. Atiq Rahimi's sad and poetic first feature invokes [Waiting for Godot], but the only absurdity in this drama is the pain, loss and ineffable grief that are the handmaidens of war.
D Atiq Rahimi P Dimitri de Clarcq S Atiq Rahimi, Kambuzia Partovi WS Films Distribution L Farsi w/English subtitles TD 35mm/ col/2004/105mins Atiq Rahimi was born in Kabul, Afghanistan, in 1962. [Earth and Ashes] (MIFF 05) is his first feature film.

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