Tehran Taboo Review : A Gripping Portrait of Life in Contemporary Iran
Exploring the sexual & gender double standards in contemporary Iran, all resulting from their strict religious codes, Tehran Taboo paints a thoroughly fascinating portrait of everyday life lived in the bustling modern metropolis where breaking societal taboos has now become the only way for its people to achieve freedom & happiness.
Exposing the hypocrisy & double standards of men, especially when it comes to matters of sex, Tehran Taboo captures how patriarchy plays an important role in subduing almost every aspect of women’s lives and how religion is nothing but a charade used by people to impose their close-minded beliefs.
Written & directed by Ali Soozandeh, the film employs rotoscoping animation technique to bring its tale to life as filming in real locations would’ve been a high-risk endeavor. But the director succeeds in painting a gripping portrait of life in contemporary Iran where the path to freedom & happiness involves breaking societal taboos on a daily basis.
Combining live-action with animation, the rotoscoping process gives the images a rich, lifelike appearance, which is all the more uplifted by fluid camerawork & apt lighting. Coming to the performances, everyone chips in with fabulous inputs but it’s Elmira Rafizadeh who leaves the most lasting impression with her wonderfully layered & expertly rendered act.
Religion comes into this as another added layer of conformity, acting as a weapon to further exploit people by keeping their desires in check while serving as a dead end to discussions that challenge these age-old beliefs. Soozandeh also lays bare the hypocrisy surrounding sex in conservative society, showing religion to be the first thing to go when it comes to pleasures of the flesh.