World Cinema Amsterdam, 3 Faces | Se rokh (2018) “..what’s real and when is it a staged scene?..”

3 Faces

“I thought 3 Faces¬†| Se rokh (2018) was a good film. I do have to admit that I thought it was a documentary film because it seemed conveyed to me in that way by someone else, but it is a beautiful fiction film. The movie is about an actress (Behnaz Jafari) who is shocked by a video of a young girl (Marziyeh Rezaei) who says that she also wants to become an actress, but her family prevents her. So she pleads for help. That is why the actress leaves the film set and together with a filmmaker (Jafar Panahi) she searches for the girl. They both want to know if her plea is real or not because the film is recorded with a smartphone.”

“What the film did with me is raise a lot of questions. For example, what is a film exactly? When is it real or not? Is her cry for help real or is it staged? And is the entire village that the girl lives in staging it? Or is the entire movie staged? Are we watching a documentation or is it just really a film? To me, the film tried to search the boundaries and borders of reporting what’s real and when is it a staged scene?”

“The video of the girl asking for help is clearly filmed with a smartphone. Then we jump to the actress watching it, but that is filmed of course with a professional camera. And after that imagine yourself as a spectator sitting in the theater watching this film. It’s very much an inception. It is hard to pinpoint, but I really feel that this film played with the idea of a viewer seeing a piece of film and wondering if it’s real or fake. Just like how I’m now thinking about you as a film journalist asking me all these questions who is going to write about this conversation, but how much of an representation will it be about what I truly said and how much of what I said will that have represented of what I actually thought? I mean these conversations could totally be faked. When it’s on social media and people are reading it they might wonder about the authenticity of the post as well.”

“Besides that, I felt that it was trying to comment on the film industry and showing a difference within that industry locally between women and men, but I was already aware of that. People should definitely watch this film and find out for themselves. You’ll understand much better what I am talking about then.”

Photo and story by Feargal Agard.