Photo: Tom Pollock, Annette Bening, Frank Pierson, Ellen Harrington, Alfre Woodard and Bill Horberg in Persepolis, Shiraz - March 2009. | Photo by: Hamidreza Pournasiri | Related post

Canaan, The City of Dreams

'Canaan' tells the story of a woman whose life seems to be boring and unendurable to her. She lives with her husband, who is about 10-15 years older than her, and with no kid. Also they are wealthy and live in a building in north of Tehran. But the problem is not her husband or anything from their relationship, the problem comes from inside her... she wants to be free. And in a scene of the movie, Mina (the woman) tells her husband sometimes she doesn't like to wake up at morning and says hi to another man (any man).

But this plot is not the reason I'm recommending you to watch Canaan, I want to talk about the way director has chosen to tell the story. Mani Haghighi (director) doesn't like to give lots of information on the main characters, and he prefers to inform you about their history during the story. Mina and her husband, have a close friend named Ali, who seems to have had a relationship with Mina before their marriage, but the story is not clear about that. We get that during a conversation which Ali is talking about a girl who left him to marry with an older guy, and this changed his life. But the movie is clear about Mina's ambition to Ali's lifestyle, who is poor, but hasn't changed during these years. In a scene at the beginning of the movie, she goes to Ali's home - when he is not there - and calms down for a while by walking in there.

And the end of movie is the best part of it in my opinion, because there's no ending in fact! Mina decides to stay with her husband, but he asks her to think more on this. The way she has decided not to leave him, is not that it should be. In fact the story is not about a couple's relationship, it's about our dreams, ambitions and the lifestyle we choose. There's nobody in the world who likes the way he/she lives and all of us are dreaming for lives we could have... Canaan is talking about this and there's no ending for this story.

P.S. The movie's title refers to an ancient city named Canaan.
P.P.S. Canaan is based on a short story by Alice Munro.

+ October 28, 2008 9:58 PM

Thanks Hamidreza,
I like the way you wrote this article
good luck