Iran, 37 min
Qaem wanted to end his life but finds new spiritual paths. Day after day he collects samplings in order to plant them on the stony mountainside of Tehran and takes care of them. Hamid Jafari (The Rock, Award for the Most Innovative Short Film, VdR 2016) is back with a poignant work about a spiritual quest.
Qaem is a middle-aged man who long ago wanted to commit suicide out of pure despair. An unforeseen spiritual awakening brings a sweeping change of heart and he begins to explore a completely new aspect of his life. Day after day he searches and collects specimens and samplings of plants on the mountainside of Tehran and takes cares of them with great devotion. He takes care of the life that cannot look after itself. Qaem acts following his own code, as if the outside world with its turmoil of war and violence didn’t exist. In his quest, the words of the Persian poet Molavi, which he shares with those who care to listen, come to him as a guiding light. Hamid Jafari, whose previous film The Rock won a prestigious award for the Most Innovative Short Film at Visions du Réel in 2016, is back with a poignant work about a spiritual quest. Jafari’s subtle camerawork follows Qaem respectfully in his daily mission discovering new meanings and secret layers of a resilient life.
Giona A. Nazzaro