Archive Fever! 5.0
This is Not a Film
dir. Jafar Panahi & Mojtaba Mirtahmasb, Iran, 2011, 35mm, Persian with English subtitles, 75 min.
This clandestine documentary, shot partially on an iPhone and smuggled into France in a cake for a last-minute submission to Cannes, depicts the day-to-day life of acclaimed director Jafar Panahi (The White Balloon, The Circle) during his house arrest in his Tehran apartment. While appealing his sentence—six years in prison and a 20 year ban from filmmaking for being convicted of “propaganda against the Islamic Republic”—Panahi is seen talking to his family and lawyer on the phone, discussing his plight with Mirtahmasb and reflecting on the meaning of the art of filmmaking.
“Jafar Panahi, forbidden by the Iranian authorities from
practicing as a filmmaker, responded with this brave and witty video diary, an
essay on the struggle between political tyranny and the creative imagination.” – A.O. Scott,
The New York Times