Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The Queen and I (Drottningen och jag) (2008)

Director: Nahid Persson. Cast: Farah Diba, Nahid Persson Sarvestani. 90 min. Unrated. Sweden. Documentary.

I don't know if non-Iranian viewers will enjoy this as much as I did. Nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at this year's Sundance Film Festival, the documentary follows interviews between the director, a Communist who fought the Shah of Iran before the revolution and fled the country thereafter, and Farah Diba, the legendary former Empress of Iran, also in exile. The film is neither pro-Communism nor pro-monarchy, but is about the benevolent heart and naive mind of an untouchable figure: a Queen. Watch this movie, and you may want to forgive people for their shortcomings.

Mo says:


  1. First of all , great thanks for recommendation! I had no idea about the movie before your mojo and hardly could find it here. I don’t know due I’m Iranian with an expected care to our history which is not so far at least for our generation or just because watching the story of who fallen of fortunes’ horse is almost always dreadful!. I Loved this documentary and found it so realistic but tragic .Looking to two woman’ tragic life who are situated in two end of spectrum of Iranian citizen with huge differences of social class and ideology but are in common in the hurt and injuries they received from revolution was so impressive…it had significant effect on changing my mind and perception to this remnant of monarchy and i don't know it is fair or not to be affected just by a movie but the real is i affected. The movie should be recommended to all for those points revealing some facts in our history and politic from a new and unbiased POV.

  2. No problem! :-)

    Throughout the movie, seeing how polite the journalist was trying to be to a former queen, I kept waiting for a moment where she would grill Farah Diba to a shish-kabab. I kept saying to myself: "Ask her the question! Ask her the question!"

    And finally when she did ask the question, in the lines of: "Where were you and the Shah when I was a child and had no food on my plate?", Farah answers something very similar to "Let them eat cake." She says: "Well, you could have sent sent me a letter and told me about your problem."

    Ironically, this exchange happens during the last minutes of the movie. The entire movie shows what a beautiful heart the Queen has, but then at the last moment, we realize she suffers from a very feeble mind.

    Typical Queen.

  3. I didn’t get your final conclusion. I felt she has a kind heart till the end…as u saw she cared about people’s request even now and she intend to send her old IPOD to that young boy ! then for this reason ,I believed if she knew about Filmmaker‘s request, maybe she did something! But like many queens she probably was aware from some facts not all. It is said by our parents she was just busy in artistic /social /educational /cultural and other activities more than politic. I felt she was not involved in politic a lot, according to her answers .Of course it’s not as a justification for her.... just as a fact. She seems so honest and reliable in this movie and I believed her! Maybe in real life she was different and what we saw was an actress not a real queen!GOD knows.

  4. I sincerely believed her honesty too. But sleeping every night with someone who tortures his oppsoition in prisons? I can only attribute this to her incredible naivete.