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SMELL OF CAMPHOR, FRAGRANCE OF JASMINE

Iran, 2000 (MIFF 2001, International Panorama)

Director: Bahman Farmanara

Bahman Farmanara, an Iranian film director, has not been allowed to work by the Post-Revolutionary Censor Board for the past 20 years. Somewhat in desperation, he accepts an assignment from Japanese TV to make a documentary about funeral rites, which gradually becomes a film about his own funeral, as well as about the fear of the his own impending death. A politically charged parable that offers a bracingly different look at the current situation in Iran, Smeil of Camphor, Fragrance of Jasmine marks the return to directing (after a 24-year absence) of Bahman Farmanara, a key figure of the pre-1979 Iranian cinema, who also (perhaps not surprisingly) gives an elegant performance as the lead character. Winner of almost evety major award at the 2000 Faijr Film Festival in Tehran, Smell of Camphor. Fragrance ol Jasmine is a graceful, moving work, whose unconcealed anger and bitterness are tempered by a wisdom that understands the need to move beyond the past. Grand Jury Prize at Montreal Film Festival.

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