The seventh edition of the Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) is showcasing an eclectic line-up of films from Iran, drawing both on the country’s heritage as well as its contemporary realities. The five films from Iran include a world premiere, two Middle East premieres and two films never screened in the Gulf region.
Sepideh Farsi, whose body of work includes the documentary Tehran Without Permission, returns to DIFF with the world premiere of The House Under the Water (La Khaneye Zire Ab). The film follows two teenagers, Morteza and Taher, who are involved in the accidental drowning of Taher’s younger brother. Thirty years later, Morteza is freshly released from prison and looking to rebuild his life when he is suspected in a death of another drowned child – and Taher, now a police officer, is investigating. The film will be screened on Dec. 17 and 18 at Cinestar, Mall of the Emirates.
Award-winning director Alireza Davoodnejad’s 18th feature film Marham (Salve) depicts the story of a generation that is closer to their grandparents than their own parents, and the grandmothers who struggle to free them from the evils of modern times. The film, which will make its Middle East premiere at DIFF, follows a devoted old woman who tries to help her rebellious drug addict granddaughter survive in Tehran’s underground as a runaway. The film will be screened on Dec. 16 and 17 at Cinestar, Mall of the Emirates.
Mohsen Abdolvahab’s striking feature debut Lotfan Mozahem Nashavid (Please Do Not Disturb) contains three different stories that take place in Tehran: one about a young woman who has been beaten by her husband on the brink of complaining to the authorities; the second about a clergymen who has to negotiate with the thief who stole his wallet and documents; and the third, the story of an elderly couple whose television has broken, but are fearful of opening the door to the repairman. The film, a Gulf premiere, will be screened on Dec. 15 and 16 at MoE.
Shekarchi (The Hunter), the fifth feature film from Iranian director Rafi Pitts of Season Five and Sanam fame, follows a Tehrani man who snaps and turns sniper after losing his wife and six-year-old daughter in the run-up to Iran’s disputed 2009 elections. He flees and is captured in the misty forests of the north, but the situation becomes complicated when his captors lose their way in the woods. The film, a Gulf premiere, will be screened on Dec. 18 and 19.
Lastly, Shahin Parhami’s documentary Amin, part of the Muhr AsiaAfrica competition, is a journey of discovery into the heartlands of Iran and the slowly disappearing folk music of the ancient Qashqai tribes of southern Iran. The film is a powerful meditation on cultural loss through the eyes of a postgraduate music student on a quest to find himself. The film, a Middle East premiere, will be screened on Dec. 15 and 17.
The seventh edition of Dubai International Film Festival 2010 will be held from December 12 to 19. DIFF 2010 is held in association with Dubai Studio City. Dubai Duty Free, Dubai International Financial Centre, Dubai Pearl, Emirates Airline and Madinat Jumeirah are the principal sponsors of DIFF. The Festival is supported by the Dubai Culture & Arts Authority.
DIFF 2010 box office locations are: Cinestar Mall of the Emirates, the Madinat Souk and the CNN Building in Dubai Media City. Tickets can also be purchased through DIFF’s Dial-a-Ticket service at (04) 391 3378 and from the website, www.dubaifilmfest.com .
For more and updated information about DIFF, please visit www.dubaifilmfest.com  or join DIFF on and .The DIFF 2010 Box Office is now open.