THE ABSENT DIRECTOR
In this ingenious one-shot dramedy, the past and present collide unexpectedly when a dysfunctional theater troupe in Tehran scrambles to rehearse MACBETH, sans director.
Toil and trouble is brewing in the home of director Arvand Dashtaray (Arvand Dashtaray) even before the curtains rise when his squabbling and frustrated theater company meets for one last rehearsal. The Iranian troupe’s dream of acceptance into the prestigious Edinburgh Theater Festival is immediately derailed by inflated egos, nasty barbs, and the director’s ill-conceived attempt to direct via Skype while he cavorts in Paris. Only assistant director Azadeh (Azadeh Mirzaei) seems to control the disparate group of amateurs and students while quelling Dashtaray’s foreign wife Marene (Marene van Holk) and her accusations of infidelity. As rumors and iambic verses collide, a discovery all but seals Azadeh and company’s fate. THE ABSENT DIRECTOR is an astonishing, genre-bending blend of fact and fiction filmmaking with a script that would make playwright Neil Simon proud while revealing the more nuanced facets of contemporary living in Iran. It perfectly coalesces through filmmaker Dashtaray’s seamless continuous take that brilliantly pulls off flashbacks amidst the disorder and keeps the mystery alive until the grand finale.
CAST: Marene van Holk, Arvand Dashtaray, Azadeh Mirzaei, Diba Khatami
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