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What Did You Dream Last Night, Parajanov?

Was hast du gestern geträumt, Parajanov?
by Faraz Fesharaki
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The woodchip wallpaper is pixelated, the sound heavily out of sync. The distance between Berlin and Isfahan: just under 4000 km. Not something so easy to bridge. The webcam does its best, creating the possibility of intimacy, but sometimes also simply testifing to the gulf. Over ten years, Faraz Fesharaki documented his exchanges with his family, a digital dialogue between the one who moved away to study film in Germany and those who stayed behind in the sizable Iranian city. Father Hassan and mother Mitra discuss the traditional role of the woman and present persimmons from the garden. He mutates into Abbas Kiarostami for a moment, she recalls her time in prison. Cousin Rahi supplements this intergenerational diaspora conversation from Austria with his favourite recipe: toast, mozzarella and egg. Much remains unsaid and is only alluded to. What Did You Dream Last Night, Parajanov? also narrates between the lines, with texts on a red background that Fesharaki edits into the film like notes and messages, as well as VHS image memories. For ultimately, this debut film is also about a dilemma: the desire to be understood without being easily able to describe one’s feelings.

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