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| Columbus Premiere
$12 via Cinema Guild
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In this follow-up to Starless Dreams (2016), Tehran-based filmmaker Mehrdad Oskouei goes inside an Iranian juvenile prison where young women serving sentences for murdering an abusive male family member share their stories.
One by one, Oskouei invites the women to go into a room by themselves, push the red button on the camera there, and address their accomplices or victims. The filmmaker builds a remarkable relationship with these inmates, observing their frank conversations and playful interactions, and they privately begin to open up about the reasons for and consequences of their actions. Through this confessional approach, combined with his ever-deepening relationships with his subjects, Oskouei presents a memorably candid picture of these young women and the prison that, ironically, provides them a kind of shelter in an aggressively male-dominated society. (74 mins., digital video) in Persian with English subtitles.
Oskouei’s companion film, Starless Dreams, is currently available on Kanopy.
• Critic’s Pick: “’Sunless Shadows’ Review: A Harsh Look at Iranian Women in Prison,” New York Times
Image courtesy of Cinema Guild
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