Friday, December 05, 2003

Inspiring Iranians

Inspiring Iranians

Friday is a time for people to stock up their supply of pirated DVDs/VCDs for the weekend. Watching DVDs have become the favourite weekend activity for most people these days. It has even become a necessity: Our ever-restless minds hunger for some kind of "screensaver" to fill up its CPU time, as if a single moment of silence is something dreadfully unthinkable. Press the play button, and we immediately enter a coma-like stupor in front of the idiot box for at least two hours. Bootleg DVDs have become the drug of the twenty-first century.

I look forward to go back to my regular Jakarta weekend routine after spending the last one in KL. I have to get accustomed to the rhythm of Jakarta living again. I still have a couple DVDs and VCDs which I haven't found the time to watch yet: the award-winnning Memento, directed by Christopher Nolan; and two Iranian movies: The Mirror and The Circle, both by acclaimed director Jafar Panahi.

I am very impressed with the Iranian movie-makers. They make intriguing movies from very simple subjects without having to resort to mindless violence and glitzy special effects. Among the few that I have watched before--Children of Heaven, Baran, Colour of Paradise (all written and directed by Majid Majidi) and The White Balloon (Jafar Panahi)--are such astounding gems of movie-making.

There's a Liverpool-Newscatle football match coming up on Saturday; it could turn out to be another heartbreaking affair for me if Liverpool loses. Maybe I should spend my time watching my Iranian movies instead. That way I can be assured of another inspiring and enlightening experience instead of a broken heart. The pain of Liverpool losing again will be too difficult to bear over the weekend. Yes, I think I'll need my mind-expanding drugs--made in Iran.

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