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Terrestrial Verses film image; serious man seated at busy desk

Terrestrial Verses

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Nine stories from contemporary Iran, where everyone is at the mercy of government and religious authorities… Different settings and circumstances, with characters varying in age, gender, class and status… But all linked by the ubiquitous impact of patriarchy on everyone, including the unborn.

In Alireza Khatami and Ali Asgari’s Terrestrial Verses, we see nine encounters between everyday Iranians interrogated by some manner of authority figure. These static vignettes place the audience in the position of the interviewer, the camera subverting the position of the subject and allowing the spectator to examine (and occupy) a point of view that is both uncomfortable and unjust.

The film’s title is a reference to the famous Iranian female poet Forough Farrokhzad, who challenged oppression and patriarchy in her personal life and her poetry. Terrestrial Verses is an audacious and beautiful film, especially in the context of the Women Life-Freedom movement, as it portrays the people and situations of everyday life in Iran with humor and masterful cinematography.

Devastating

Ryan Lattanzio, Indiewire

Elegant, eloquent and unwavering in its determination to reveal the plight of the individual Iranians it showcases, Terrestrial Versus is confident, compelling filmmaking.

Alexandra Heller-Nicholas, AWFJ.org

Inspired by the intricate rhymes of ghazal, a classic form of Persian poetry, writer-directors Ali Asgari and Alireza Khatami have constructed a thoroughly modern work of bracing concision, elegance and blistering deadpan humor, one that pulses with sorrow and outrage over the absurdity of authoritarian dictates that aim to crush souls.

Sheri Linden, Hollywood Reporter

Directors

Alireza Khatami & Ali Asgari

Cast

Bahram Ark, Arghavan Shabani, Servin Zabetian, Sadaf Asgari, Faezeh Rad, Hossein Soleymani

Credits
Country of Origin

Iran

Year

2023

Language

In Persian with English subtitles

19+
77 min

Book Tickets

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Credits

Screenwriter

Alireza Khatami, Ali Asgari

Cinematography

Adib Sobhani

Editor

Ehsan Vaseghi

Original Music

Masoud Fayaz Zadeh

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