The Persian Version (2024) Hollywood Movie Reviews

“The Persian Version,” directed and written by Maryam Keshavarz, is a captivating American comedy-drama film that delves into the complexities of identity, family bonds, and cultural clashes. Set against the backdrop of an Iranian-American family, the movie weaves together humor, emotion, and relatable human experiences.

CastLayla Mohammadi, Chiara Stella, Niousha Noor, Kamand Shafieisabet, Bijan Daneshmand, Shervin Alenabi, Bella Warda, Sachli Gholamalizad, Tom Byrne, Jerry Habibi
CinematographyAndré Jäger
DirectorMaryam Keshavarz
MusicRostam Batmanglij
ProducerAnne Carey, Ben Howe, Luca Borghese, Maryam Keshavarz, Peter Block, Cory Neal
Relese DateOctober 2024

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The film boasts a talented ensemble cast, each contributing to the authenticity of their characters:

  • Layla Mohammadi as Leila: Our protagonist, a young Iranian-American filmmaker.
  • Niousha Noor as Shireen: Leila’s mother, with whom she often clashes.
  • Bijan Daneshmand as Ali Reza: Leila’s father, facing a critical medical condition.
  • Bella Warda as Mamanjoon: Leila’s grandmother, offering wisdom and perspective.
  • Tom Byrne as Maximillian: An actor with whom Leila shares a one-night stand.

Leila, the central character, grapples with her dual identity as an Iranian-American. A chance encounter with Maximillian leads to an unexpected pregnancy, further complicating her life. Meanwhile, her father, Ali Reza, urgently needs a heart transplant. Leila’s large family reunites in New York City, bringing together eight brothers and a host of emotions. Amidst family dynamics, Leila finds herself at odds with her mother, Shireen, while seeking solace in her grandmother’s company. Flashbacks to Iran reveal Shireen’s early marriage to Ali Reza, adding depth to their family saga.

“The Persian Version” premiered at the Sundance Film Festival on January 21, 2023, where it garnered acclaim and won the Audience Award for the U.S. Dramatic Competition. Sony Pictures Classics and Stage 6 Films handled its limited theatrical release in the United States on October 20, 2023. Critics praised the film’s authenticity and emotional resonance, with the National Board of Review recognizing it as one of the top 10 independent films of 2023.

Maryam Keshavarz’s directorial prowess shines through in “The Persian Version.” As Leila navigates her cultural heritage, family ties, and unexpected pregnancy, audiences are treated to a heartfelt exploration of what it means to belong. With humor, compassion, and relatability, this film invites viewers to reflect on their own identities and connections.

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