With the amount of football-related adverts there are on tv at the moment, you’d be forgiven for thinking that there was a huge world football tournament about to begin in a couple of months…oh wait… there is a huge football tournament beginning in a couple of months…it all makes sense now!
So with this constant bombardment of football on our screens, which is only going to increase in the coming months, you might start to feel a little nauseous at the thought of watching a film about a World Cup qualifying match that takes place in Iran. However, Jafar Panahi’s Offside is much more than a film that revolves around a football match.
The film centres on three Iranian women who attempt to gain entry into a World Cup qualifier between Iran and Bahrain (women entering sports stadiums is prohibited in Iran). The film uses comedy to tackle issues of identity politics and the role of women in Iranian society. It was awarded the Silver Bear Award at the Berlin Film Festival in 2006 and will be screened at Maison Mayci in Moseley this Wednesday evening.
This particular screening of Offside will have a certain poignancy about it as Jafar Panahi was arrested at his home on 1 March 2010 for ‘making a film against the (Iranian) regime’. He has been held without charge since. You can find updates on the situation at the Free Jafar Panahi Facebook page, and the International Campaign on Human Rights in Iran have also published a report on Panahi’s condition by his wife.
The night has been put on by those lovely 7 inch Cinema folk and is part of an international campaign in support of his work. Doors: 7pm. Price: Minimum donation is £3 (all profits go to Amnesty International), corkage is £2 (so bring a bottle!)