Mehran Tamadon, France/Switzerland, 2014, 105 min, in Farsi with English Subtitles
An atheist, Iranian filmmaker Mehran Tamadon managed to convince four mullahs, all believers in the Islamic Republic of Iran, to come and stay with him for two days and engage in discussion. In this confined space, daily life is combined with debate, an unremitting demonstration of the problematic issue of how to live together, when each side’s understanding of the world is so contrary.
My filmmaking is not a weapon of war. I do not use images as a means to demonstrate my own thinking or to settle scores. I do not use it as an instrument of propaganda, but to create a space that should enable mutual understanding and make dialogue possible. A space that obliges people who hate each other to see and listen to each other, so that one day they may be capable of mutual tolerance. In this sense, this documentary does not show society as it is. It contains a promise within itself. It is a space that creates situations that do not exist in Iran today. The film creates an arena in which I talk, following rules other than those imposed by the Iranian authorities. I ask defenders of the Iranian regime to come into my space and agree to listen to my freedom of tone. I ask them to participate in the project of a man who looks at them with a certain distance. A man who has objectives other than theirs, but who treats them as equals. I ask them to sit within a framework which they do not control. A framework that will doubtless show an image of themselves that is different from the one they want to convey. I ask them to accept a film that looks at them in another way.
Link to the trailer (French Subtitles):