Eric Wolfram's Writing, Review of Delbaran


Directed by Abolfazl Jalili

Director Abolfazl Jalili is obviously well aquanted with the language of cinima, and his newset film, Delbaran, is an unexpected treat and is an excellent example of story telling shown in the cuts and edits (as opposed to telling story by having the camera follow the action.) Instead, Jalili uses the juxtaposition of images to propel the story and to make his magic. Delbaran jumps along in the very best ways.

Highly visual and with simple dialog, this characture play is not driven by plot. It is, instead, a mosic of scenes involving an Afgani war orphin boy named Kaim, who constantly runs around the arid desert of Eastern Iran. Delbaran humanizes Irainian society, and therefore is an important film, which should be viewed by all in America.

Kaim is very tough for a fourteen year old, a little man, and is an extrememly likable characture. He works for the owners of a truck stop at a forsaken peice of arid highway. There is something about the way Kaim helps the people who find themselves in broken down cars there, something about his his honesty and grit. He is as rugged as the barren land around him and he seems as wise as the wind that shapes its dunes. Yet there is a stunning vulnerability in his eye, that of a child, and you want to take him home and take care of him.

Especially in this time when our media distorts images of people from these areas, Delbaran offers us different view. This film is also a clue for us Westerners, which exposes the Iranian/Afgani relations -- a distinction misunderstood in America today.

In Delbaran, we get to see a wonderful industrious self-reliant community -- a culture not unlike our own. Any film that humanizes an "enemy" is obviously needed in our troubled times. Delbaran stands on it's own though, a wonderful movie in any times.

Country: Iran/Japan
Year: 2001
Run Time: 96 minutes
Cast: Kaeem Alizadeh, Rahmatollah Ebrahimi, Hossein Hashemian, Ahmad Mahdavi
Producer: Abolfazl Jalili, Shozo Ichiyama
Editor: Abolfazl Jalili
Cinematographer: Mohammad Ahmadi
Screenwriter: Abolfazl Jalili

This Film Was Viewed at the 45th San Francisco International Film Festival

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