Directed by Maryam Keshavarz (USA, 2023, 107 min.). English and Farsi with English subtitles.
Winning both the Audience Award and the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award at the 2023 Sundance Film Festival, this film by writer-director-producer Maryam Keshavarz delivers a universal and timely story of the Iranian and Iranian American experience with this crowd-pleasing comedy.
With a family that straddles two conflicting cultures, Iranian American Leila (Layla Mohammadi) strives to find balance and embrace her opposing cultures while boldly challenging the labels society is so quick to project upon her. When her family reunites in New York City for her father’s heart transplant, Leila keeps her family members at arm’s length in an effort to avoid lectures and judgement about her lifestyle. But as time goes by, Leila begins to see the distinct parallels between her life and that of her mother, Shireen (Niousha Noor). Punctuated by a bright color palette, snappy comedy, and vibrant dance numbers, The Persian Version delivers an honest portrayal of a woman who remains unapologetically herself, blended seamlessly into a heartfelt story about family, belonging, and the undeniable influence of pop music.
“Pulses with personality, striking an excellent balance between humor and heart.… Mohammadi is phenomenal as Leila, seizing your heart and commanding your laughter—sometimes within the same scene.” —RogerEbert.com
With English subtitles