Yesterday I watched “Children of Heaven”, an Iranian film by Majid Majidi. A few weeks back a colleague introduced me to Iranian films. ‘Their cinema is famous. They pick a simple topic, and create a beautiful film on it’, he said.
Children of Heaven deals with a brother and sister and their adventures over a lost pair of shoes. It was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film in 1998.
The movie is filmed in Persian language and you have to read subtitles to understand but it doesn't make it less interesting. Believe me it doesn't.
The film is beautiful and gets close to your heart not because of any extraordinary theme but just because of the opposite, its simplicity. It's simplicity is it’s charisma. And the direction, a magic.
The film takes us into the very common life of an Iranian home and after a few minutes you feel you know the family. You empathize with them and think how their life can get better. It's a film which will hold you while watching it but will makes you contemplate more after. There are couple of things that you dwell on after watching the film, the simple life, the rustic yet cinematic streets, the bond between the children and teachers, Irani education system. Moreover, the problems faced by a poor family, the love and bond between the children and their parents, love between the siblings, the determination of the children to manage with a single pair of shoes, not to avoid spanking but because they know that their father cannot afford to buy new pair before the month end and they don't want to burden him.
The music is minimal but the background score is perfect at the highlighting shots. Some of the scenes are brilliantly shot, the one when Ali and his sister goes to the girls place to get the shoes back, the girl running after the shoe when it falls into the gutter, the other one when Ali promises his sister that he'll come third and gift her the shoes, then the intricately filmed race, the memories flashing on his mind while running and the most beautiful, the climax when he immerses his feet in the pond and the fishes kisses his feet. There are many shots and those who have watched the film will understand.
The film and the director is extraordinary and I am going to watch the other films by him. Those who love content cinema and good direction should watch this film. Also, I think parents should show it to their children.
[ Must Watch ]