Persepolis (2007)

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Persepolis – Vincent Paronnaud & Marjane Satrapi

Summary: A young girl growing up in Tehran begins to learn of her country’s politics as Iran’s uprising against its Shah topples him from power.  Marjane’s uncle, having once been imprisoned for rebelling against the government, is released and is hugely impressionable as she comes of age, against the backdrop of the Islamic revolution.  Refusing to be repressed by the new regime she actively rejects it, celebrating punk rock and wearing denim with her now forcibly-worn head scarf.  But, she soon realises even these simple freedoms are wiped from under her feet and what was once her home quickly becomes a place to fear.

My Review:  All geared up for a powerful subtitled Iranian film, I was surprised to hear the familiar voices of Sean Penn and Iggy Pop.  I later found out this was only for the English release however, and discovering more about Iran, its culture and history, were still definitely on the menu.  Adapted from an autographical graphic novel, it’s not as hard-hitting as what I was expecting, I can’t tell if this is because the sometimes comical animation softens the blow, but the story told definitely deserves wider attention in the west than what it’s so far received.  A thought-provoking watch, shining light to a side in the middle-east not always understood.

My Rating: 3/5

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