At Five in the Afternoon

Directed by Samira Makhmalbaf

Samira Makhmalbaf crosses into Afghanistan for her latest film, also co-written with her father. Named after a poem by Spain’s Federico García Lorca, this poetic-realist film is an exploration of life in Afghanistan after the ‘liberation’ of the country from Taliban rule. Focusing on the status of women in Afghan society (and by extension in the director’s native Iran), it follows Nogreh who attends a school for women and girls and who dreams of being president of her homeland. In tracing the footsteps of this determined and intelligent young woman, the film also reveals other people’s attitudes – those of her chauvinist, fundamentalist father; an aspiring poet; a French soldier; the myriad homeless refugees that she encounters. In the process Makhmalbaf builds a portrait of a country still suffering, yet largely ignored by the same media who had also invaded it, post 9/11. “Those who think democracy is a project and can be implemented by military operations in every region will not agree with FIVE IN THE AFTERNOON.” Samira Makhmalbaf

105 minutes

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