Stardust-stricken, Mohsen Makhmalbaf: A Portrait

This feature-length 1996 video documentary by Houshang Golmakani about the eclectic and prolific Iranian filmmaker has the worst English subtitles of any Iranian film I’ve seen (which is saying a lot), and the editing is needlessly fussy and fancy. But it has a lot of interesting things to say about Makhmalbaf, with loads of material about his early life and career, many clips, archival material, and interviews, including a brief dialogue with filmmaker Werner Herzog. Anyone who wants to understand Makhmalbaf’s work better shouldn’t pass up this film, though it arguably goes beyond acceptable bounds when it includes footage of him grieving at his wife’s funeral. (JR)

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