This Is Not A Film’ Is Jafar Panahi’s Highly Moving Depiction Of His Own House Arrest

Iranian director Jafar Panahi at the 56th Berl...

Iranian director Jafar Panahi at the 56th Berlinale 2006, winner of the Silver Bear for his film OFFSIDE. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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The title of Jafar Panahi‘s “This Is Not A Film” is a nod to the fact that the 75-minute feature is shot on a Dv camera and an iPhone, and consists mostly of Panahi and his collaborator and friend Mojtaba Mirtahmasb hanging out in the former’s high-rise apartment over the course of a day. But it’s also a postmodern jab at the lousy circumstances that led to its own existence — this is not a film, because Panahi is banned from making films for the next two decades. He’s under house arrest, awaiting news of his appeal of the six-year prison sentence he was given for his actions in support of Iran’s opposition movement, forbidden from talking to the press and from leaving the country, silenced. For its premiere at Cannes, which Panahi wasn’t, of course, able to attend, it was reportedly smuggled out on a Usb stick hidden inside a cake

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