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Children of Heaven

March 21, 2010

I usually attend Cinemagic movie nights that take place every Thursday and Saturday in Kuwait.  They usually show great movies or documentaries.  This month they have been showing movies that have been nominated with Oscars or have won Oscars in the past.  Sometimes I get disappointed by movies, and other times I get pleasantly surprised.  This weekend I was pleasantly surprised by Children of Heaven.

Children of Heaven is an Iranian movie that was made in 1997.  The actual name is Bacheha Ye Aseman and was written and directed by Majed Majidi.  Between 1997 and 1999 it was nominated for several awards and won several too.

The plot basically is about two siblings, Ali and Zahra who come from a very poor family.  Ali lost Zahra’s shoes (her only pair) when he was returning them from the shoe repair.  Ali was too scared to tell his parents in fear of being punished, and also knowing that his father cannot afford to buy Zahra a new pair of shoes.  The siblings decided to keep it a secret between themselves.

Since the lost pair of shoes were Zahra’s only pair, they decided to share Ali’s sneakers.  Zahra attends school in the mornings whilst Ali attends school at noon.  Zahra goes to school every morning in Ali’s sneakers and races back home to give the shoes to Ali so he can run to school.  This secret arrangement of theirs, lead them from one adventure to the next.

There are moments while watching this movie where you would want to cry, and other moments where you will burst out laughing.  This movie is definitely a must watch and everyone should have a copy of it in their library.   The film has no special effects, and obviously is not a big budget film, but it is directed beautifully.  Majed Majidi did a superb job in this movie.  From the first few minutes of the movie, you can tell it is going to be special and the way the story is weaved out keeps you entertained that you truly do not want to miss a single scene.  The kids did a great job acting that you do not need the subtitles to tell you how they feel since the emotions they portrayed were so evident and clear … their simplicity and innocence was just beautiful to watch and admire.  Truly… The Children of Heaven.

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