Movie Information

In Brief: Pretty amazing film version of Marjane Satrapi's autobiographical comic Persepolis, about an Iranian girl growing up in the shadow of two oppressive regimes. Though playful in tone, it's a narrative that goes much deeper than one might expect.
Genre: Animated Fanciful Biopic
Director: Vincent Paronnaud, Marjane Satrapi
Starring: (Voices) Chiara Mastroianni, Catherine Deneuve, Danielle Darrieux, Simon Abkarian, Gabrielle Lopes Benites
Rated: PG-13

From the original review: “Here’s one of those rare instances where the hype surrounding a film is at least very nearly justified. Marjane Satrapi’s deceptively simple autobiographical comic books, Persepolis, have been effectively turned into an equally deceptively simple animated biopic by Ms. Satrapi and co-director Vincent Paronnaud. The film — nominated for a best animated film Oscar — tells the story of its young Iranian protagonist, from her days as a child during the era of the Shah and his quasi-enlightened, self-serving political oppression through the overthrow of that regime in favor of an even more oppressive, theocratic government.

“As the daughter of an intellectually oriented family with a taste for Marxism and Western culture (or decadence, as the later government would view it), Marjane made for a very unlikely submissive Iranian woman. So it’s hardly surprising that she was eventually sent out of the country to attend school in Vienna, or that her subsequent return to Iran would prove troublesome and result in her family “ordering” her to go to France and never return to her homeland. These are the bare bones of Satrapi’s story — at least one aspect of which (the inclusion of Marxism) has proved unpopular with some viewers.”

Full review here.

Classic World Cinema by Courtyard Gallery will present Persepolis Friday, Oct. 25, at 8 p.m. at Phil Mechanic Studios, 109 Roberts St., River Arts District (upstairs in the Railroad Library).  Info: 273-3332,

About Ken Hanke
Head film critic for Mountain Xpress from December 2000 until his death in June 2016. Author of books "Ken Russell's Films," "Charlie Chan at the Movies," "A Critical Guide to Horror Film Series," "Tim Burton: An Unauthorized Biography of the Filmmaker."

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