The First Stone
Directed by Ebrahim Forouzesh | IRAN | 2010 | 90min | Subtitled
Ebrahim Foruzesh’s black comedy about the rituals of life and death pivots on Hassan, who has been dreaming of dying every night and so goes into the city and gets himself a tombstone. The villagers and even his wife, Zivar, make fun of Hassan but she gradually takes a liking to the tombstone. Zivar asks him to get one for her too, so he does. However, things do not end here. Other women of the village make the same demand of their husbands and the village men all blame Hassan. Tombstones are a vital aspect of Iran’s traditional culture. What Hassan and Zivar considered important was the tombstone’s inscription which is like a poem and shows how Iranians think of life and death. Hassan and his tombstone end up being much ado about nothing, but Foruzesh uses it to talk about the morals and customs of Iran’s communal society and the differences in the ways men and women think. - (Kim Ji-seok) Pusan International Film Festival
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