Children of Heaven

My kids loved this award-winning 1997 Iranian film.  They were very hesitant to watch another sub-titled foreign film but I told them to try the first 10 minutes and then we can stop if they don’t like it.  My son is 11-years-old and my daughter is 9-years-old and the film’s stars are a young brother and sister.

You can read Wiki for the details.  Here is a quick bullet-list of the things my kids and I talked about during the film (pausing a few times).

  • Children around the world often work from a very young age
  • School is a privilege
  • The submissive role of women in Islamic nations
  • Their Government hates us but not all the people hate us
  • They have the same emotions as us but very different customs
  • Brother and sister caring for each other all over the world
  • Family needs to stick together
  • What is Islam
  • They believe just what their parents tell them
  • Father is strict but stressed and loving

My kids loved it and thought deeply.   It is one way for them to visit other countries and learn about other beliefs both critically and sympathetically.  The trick is, to make their journey fun.


Filed under Events, Personal

5 responses to “Children of Heaven

  1. Sounds good, I added it to my Netflix queue. Love the colors on the movie poster!

  2. One complaint that I once heard from an Iranian about this film is this.
    If this is the only Iranian film that an American ever sees they will have a distorted understanding of the economic conditions in the country.
    A film that was recommended by this person was called Legend of a Sigh. This film goes in a circle showing several families of different social classes. It starts and finishes with the same woman who is the widow of a relatively wealthy businessman.
    This person also says that thinking of most Iranian women as submissive is also misleading. Can a person who is forced to do or not do something by an overwhelming threat of physical violence be considered submissive? Or, should that word be used just for people who submit just because they are lazy or do not care one way or the other?
    Another reason for submission might be that a person is not sure which side in a struggle is actually the better side so they do nothing. They may also be unsure which courses of action to take in resisting patriarchy or phoney democracy.

    I am glad to see that you are back. I was beginning to think that you had been kidnapped by aliens from north of the border.

  3. Sadly, Legend of a Sigh doesn’t seem to be widely available. I found a site that would sell it, but Netflix didn’t have it and neither does my local library.

  4. Hope you enjoy, Mike. Thanks Curt.

  5. i really enjoyed this film. i would hope to have this style of watching movies with my kid when she grows up. very cool.

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