The real star of Berlin, this is it. Jafar Panahi, Iranian filmmaker, author of masterpieces such as The White Balloon, The Circle, Crimson Gold. It was more or less without news from the director of engineering at the end of 2011 the Iranian judiciary confirmed on appeal the grotesque sentence imposed on him a few months t t: six years in prison and twenty years prohibition of filming, traveling or speaking in public.
Good news, the sentence was not executed. Jafar Panahi is not in prison, he even performed in complicity with his old friend Kamboziya Partovi (writer Circle), a new film, Closed Curtain (“the curtain closed”) in competition at Berlin.
Bad news: he has managed to make his film out of the territory, the rebel filmmaker is not out himself. Thursday, February 7, at the opening ceremony of the festival, Bernd Neumann, the German Minister of Culture, had nevertheless appealed to Iranian authorities, asking them to lift the sanction and allow to come to present his film public of the Berlinale. In vain.
“Not being able to turn out to be in jail”
In solidarity, the festival has booked the filmmaker a place on the jury, as the major festivals do since his arrest in March 2010. Tuesday, February 12, the day of the world premiere of Closed Curtain, statuettes cardboard in his likeness was installed around the edge of the palace.
Closed Curtain is an extension This is not a movie, the last feature film of the author, which was shown at Cannes in 2011. Jafar Panahi was then already condemned, and the film was aware of this state of creative impotence to which he had been reduced. Shooting Closed Curtain was less obvious yet explained Kamboziya Partovi, came alone to defend Berlin film because it was made while the sentence was final. Recruit a team as small as it was not easy, he said, and this is why, for example, he plays himself r? Principal. The risk exposure of the film pose to its author would be much larger, in addition, to the last, the penalty may become effective at any time. They did after all, is that, for Jafar Panahi, “can not turn out to be in prison.”
That is, almost exactly, the film’s subject. In a plot where the boundaries between fantasy and reality are constantly blurred, Closed Curtain evokes mental prison in which is enclosed the filmmaker. “It was very sad, deeply depressed, and her doctor suggested she take notes, think, to keep his mind alert, even if he had no right to turn. He began to write, I gave him returns, and with each new version was more excited. Gradually make the film became a necessity, “says Kamboziya Partovi.
Closed Curtain happens in a house on the beach, facing the sea (vacation home Panahi). A man walks with his dog. The view is perfect. We do not benefit long. As soon as the door closed, the man pulls out all the curtains and their superimposed black hangings.
“This dog, it’s me”
Man hides. It is in breach of the law since the dogs were considered unclean by Islam. A quasi-disneyien plan the mouth of this dog, lying on the sofa, looking sad as any as he discovers the screen graves of fellow canine, establishes its kinship with the mysterious and no less burlesque Iguana This is not a movie.
“This dog is me,” we whispered Panahi, one knee, but always malicious. The I? Be the dog, it’s a bit too. Come into this house to write a screenplay, he re? Ilo visiting a young fugitive. Outside, the police r? For. Inside, the man would write, but the woman harassment, calls into question the system, wants to wrest his confinement. It is the film being done. Or something else.
The third time the film sees Jafar Panahi enter the scene in his own r? It replaced the protagonists of the previous sequences, referring to an imaginary status. Discussions with a neighbor, workers translate literally the plight of an artist who has lost taste for life. But completing this film, which nobody, not even the authors, not imagined he would see the day, this third part breathes a new light. Straws.
Berlinale 2013 Internet: www.berlinale.de.