After thirty years spent in prisons of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Kurdish-Iranian poet Sahel finally walks free. Now the one thing keeping him alive is the thought of finding his wife Mina, who thinks he is long dead and has since moved to Turkey. Sahel sets out on an Istanbul-bound search. –TIFF
Bahman Ghobadi (Kurdish: بههمهن قوبادی) is an Iranian film director of Kurdish ethnicity. He was born on February 1, 1969 in Baneh, Iranian Kurdistan. Ghobadi belongs to the so called “new wave” of Iranian cinema.
He was born in Baneh, in northwestern Kurdistan Province of Iran. His family moved to Sanandaj in 1981. Ghobadi received a Bachelor of Arts in film directing from the Iranian Broadcasting College. After a brief career in industrial photography, Ghobadi began making short 8 mm films. His documentary Life In Fog won numerous awards. Bahman Ghobadi was assistant director on Abbas Kiarostami’s The Wind Will Carry Us.
Bahman Ghobadi founded Mij Film in 2000, a company with the aim of production of films in Iran about its different ethnic groups. His first feature film was A Time for Drunken Horses (2000), the first Kurdish film produced in Iran. The film won Caméra d’Or at Cannes Film Festival. His second feature was Marooned in Iraq (2002), which brought him the… read more
Ghobadi has crafted a film that is poetic and perfectly in tune with the turmoil of a man betrayed and wrongfully imprisoned for 30 years. Evocatively shot with restrained performances and impressive sound design, Rhino Season demonstrates the heartbreak of a broken life and the stripping of free will. Metaphors like the giant tree are both visually impressive and powerfully clear. 4 stars
Stylistically this is Ghobadi's most impressive film yet, weaving past and present together with stunning imagery focusing on textures and reflections, tortured bare branches, marching revolutionaries blending into snowflakes and grooved faces emerging from darkness. Read my full review: www.brnrd.net/blog/archive/2013/01/27/iffr-rhino-season