Son-Mother / Pesar-Madar (plus Q+A)
Love and tradition collide in this moving and compassionate first fiction-feature from documentarist Mahnaz Mohammadi. Leila (Raha Khodayari), a widow living in sanctions-hit Iran, has a poorly-paid factory job and is struggling to make ends meet, but receives a marriage proposal that could transform the prospects of her family. Unfortunately, tradition and propriety insist she will not be able to take her 12-yr-old son Amir (Mahan Nasiri) when she marries kind-hearted Kazem (Reza Behboodi), because he has a daughter of the same age and they would be prohibited from living under the same roof. With the eyes of hostile neighbours and colleagues watching, she is faced with a terrible dilemma: make a more comfortable life for herself and her baby daughter but risk losing her son, or turn down the marriage offer to keep her family intact. Told first from the mother’s point of view, then the son’s, like the best Iranian cinema Son-Mother spotlights the moral and ethical conflicts of living under the country’s archaic cultural dictates, whilst providing a child’s-eye view into a complex adult world that doesn’t and shouldn’t make sense.
Click here to watch a recording of the live Q+A with director Mahnaz Mohammadi which followed the launch screening on Tuesday 9th.
“A simple story told simply, documentarian Mahnaz Mohammadi’s entry into filmmaking will break your heart.” – Globe and Mail, Toronto.
“Mahnaz Mohammadi draws on the compassion and patience she honed as a documentary filmmaker to craft an authentic story of a relationship between a mother and a son, threatened by their culture, in all its tense complexity.” - Toronto International Film Festival.
Iran, Czech Republic