Pardis Mellat Mahmoud Kalari Photos Sony Billboard Snow Ghaytarieh Fajr Film Festival Pardis Zendegi Valentine's Day Tehran Jajrood Takdaneh Grape Juice Tehran Slumdog Pills Poor Worker Sick Ali Baba Maajoon Tehran Street Corner America Car in Tehran Seyyed Khandan Tree In The Wall Stove Valiasr Bagh Demolished Film Monthly - Taraneh Alidoosti in About Elly Fruits Mausoleum Saadat Abad Iranian US Air Force Fan Darband Donkey Darband Coffee House Birthday Watch About Elly
Pardis Mellat cinema complex, one of the movie theaters featuring films from the 27th Fajr International Film Festival. The festival takes place during the 10 days of fajr celebrations, on the anniversary of the Islamic Revolution.
This year the revolution turned 30. At a photo gallery by celebrated Iranian photographer and cinematographer Mahmoud Kalari, where photos of the Islamic Revolution of Iran were on display.
A snowy night on Chamran freeway with the Sony billboards begging for attention.
Fun with snow in Ghaytarieh park.
At screening of another one of them mediocre films that bore you to pieces and leave you feeling sorry for the state of Iranian cinema! Like all things in Iran, politics play a big role in determining who gets what during the awards "distribution." In recent years the awards ceremony resembles more a center for distribution of awards to those favored by policies of the government than a ceremony honoring the best and the brightest.
At Pardis Zendegi cinema complex in West Tehran. The Pardis series of movie theaters are newly built. But don't be fooled. Tehran, with a population of more than 13 million, only has about 55 movie theaters, majority of which are very old and poorly maintained. There are only about 250 movie theaters in all of Iran.
Red roses on sale for Valentine's day. This scam of a day has found its way into the relationships of even the most traditional of Iranian couples, proved by the sight of bearded men buying roses for their hidden-by-chador loved ones. But then again, one might see this as progress. One step forward in the direction of love, away from hatred.
At a villa in Jajrood, some 20 miles outside of Tehran, where you can enjoy fresh air and loud music.
I must admit that I am impressed by all the packaged goods my fellow Iranians make available to me. There's something very modern and civil about the sight of a straw with a plastic wrapper attached to a tiny box of an all natural grape juice. It makes me feel good knowing that this was all produced right here in Iran.
Slumdog millionaires! After the revolution many of the less fortunate grabbed lands in various other neighborhoods around Tehran and built homes they never really owned. The land they live on is worth millions, but since they don't own it they can't sell it. And since the government is afraid of the poor, they can't kick them out either.
I'm often surprised by how every Iranian is a doctor in his or her own right. If you do as much as sneeze, you will be prescribed a series of pills and anti-biotics that guarantee to fix you right back up. The result is an over-medicated population with full [apparent] knowledge of the relatively cheap offerings of Iranian pharmaceuticals.
A poor worker attending to his sick friend in the emergency room of Dey Hospital.
Ali Baba Vitamine (Maajoon) in south Tehran is famous for the skillful acrobatics-in-pouring of the tasty milk-shake that will leave you energized and euphoric.
A street corner in south Tehran on a rainy night.
Red, green and blue offered up in the form of an old American car, a motorbike and an old-school fence.
Seyyed Khandan square has one of the three worst pollution rates in Tehran. This [Iranian] year alone some 320 Tehranis have died from lung malfunction related to smog and air pollution.
Which came first? The tree or the wall? I like to think that the wall came first and that the tree fought its way up through the wall and into the skies above.
A stove inside an office building in central Tehran.
A rare piece of land on Valiasr Street in northern Tehran that is yet to be corrupted by a developer looking to make money at the expense of killing trees and gardens.
A neighborhood scheduled for demolition to make room for a much needed freeway that will probably not even make a dent in solving the traffic entanglement of central Tehran.
Critics of Film Monthly - the leading film magazine in Iran - voted About Elly the best film of the Fajr Film Festival. If one were to have helped write About Elly's screenplay, one would be happy to see it do well, and one would certainly have learned a valuable lesson not taught in one's film school; to sign a contract so that one doesn't get screwed in the credits!
Inflation is so high that prices of domestically produced goods such as apples and oranges are comparable to that of the US. A recent BBC article I read predicted that Iran is on the verge of a total economic meltdown. I certainly hope that they are wrong and that our president-in-denial is right in his claims that all is fine.
A mausoleum in Zargandeh erected in memory of four martyrs (heroes) of the Iran-Iraq war. No Iranian will ever deny the heroism of those who died serving their country in a war imposed by a madman named Saddam Hussein. But it's rather unfortunate that even the remains of war heroes are not immune to politics and electioneering of politicians.
A mosque on the corner of Saadat Abad square in west Tehran.
I really didn't know what to think of this sticker on the back of some dude's car! Was he a fan of US Air Force or was he simply unable to read English? I mean you're bound to get pulled over in Los Angeles if you drive around with an "Iran Air Force" sticker on the back of your car. And yet, this car was roaming about and minding his own business in Tehran...
Good old donkeys carrying loads of goods on roads not fit for bikes and automobiles deep in the mountains in northern Tehran at a popular hiking destination named Darband.
A makeshift coffee house full with fancy-looking furniture high up in the mountains in Darband.
A special gift from a special someone for my 30th birthday. I hear your 30s move at an even quicker pace than your 20s. So here's to making every second count. To realizing my dreams and jump-starting a decade that will define who I am and what I'm made of...

World Premiere of Asghar Farhadi's About Elly during the final days of Fajr Film Festival saved an otherwise mediocre festival line up. Critics raved and are already calling it the best film of the past decade. The film simultaneously premiered in Berlin Film Festival to great reviews and was later awarded the Silver Bear for Best Directing. All agree that this film starts a new chapter in Iranian cinema, which was experiencing a period of sharp decline in popularity among film festivals and art house theaters around the world. Considering my contributions to its creation I have justified at least the first year of my stay in Tehran - albeit without a proper credit. And now, on this the second anniversary of LGOIT.COM, I can only hope for more such fruits of my stay and justifications for my second year and beyond...

Previous Issue | Next Issue | Home