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Join Ellen Shelton for this wonderful introduction to A TIME FOR DRUNKEN HORSES

BendFilm's latest "Take Four" Series features four Iranian directors who are known for retelling timeless, often true stories, and for their fascinating use of non-professional actors in roles so natural they feel unrehearsed. A TIME FOR DRUNKEN HORSES is the second film in this new series of Iranian Cinema.

Film Synopsis:

Winner of the Camera D'or (Best First Feature) at the Cannes Film Festival, A TIME FOR DRUNKEN HORSES announced Iranian director Bahman Ghobadi (Turtles Can Fly, No One Knows About Persian Cats) as a major talent. His debut follows the heart-wrenching drama of a Kurdish family living on the Iran-Iraq border. The only work available in this poverty-stricken locale is to smuggle goods between the countries, through hills stalked by armed bandits. These dangers rob Ayoub (Ayoub Ahmadi), Amaneh (Amaneh Ekhtiar-dini), Rojin (Rojin Younessi) and the developmentally disabled Madi (Madi Ekhtiar-dini) of their parents, and they are forced to fend for themselves.

Ayoub is the eldest boy, and soon starts making the perilous overland journeys himself, desperate to raise money for Madi's life-saving operation. Surviving the snowy valleys and marauding thieves does not bring in enough money, and their uncle sets up an arranged marriage for Rojin, threatening to split up the close-knit siblings. Haunting performances by the non-professional child actors convey a devastating portrait of Kurdish life on the margins of Iranian society.

BendFilm Associate Programmer Ellen Shelton gives a short introduction to the film and its director and will answer any questions you have directly at ellen@bendfilm.org.

After watching Ellen's introduction see the film on Kanopy which is FREE and always available with a valid library card.


This program is made possible in part by support from the James F. and Marion L. Miller and the Pacific Power Foundations.

  • Year
  • Runtime
    80 minutes
  • Language
  • Country
    Iran, Islamic Republic of
  • Director
    Bahman Ghobadi