Cannes review: 'Persepolis'

Bottom Line: This rare animated political film witnesses the Iranian Revolution from a highly personal perspective.

CANNES -- Discussions may grow heated following the premiere of "Persepolis" at the Festival de Cannes. But those discussions will focus more on the movie's politics than art. "Persepolis" is an animated feature by Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud based on Satrapi's graphic novel about her growing up in Mullah-ridden Iran during the Islamic Revolution and the Iran-Iraq war. The young woman, who now lives in Paris, paints a grim picture, one familiar to those of us in the West but one that many Iranians and Islamic fundamentalists will no doubt vehemently reject.

The drawings themselves are plain, very generalized and almost entirely in black and white. Perhaps Satrapi and Paronnaud feared that, were the animation more vital and realistic, the film would become too cartoonish and vulgar. Perhaps they're right. But as animation "Persepolis" is fairly uninteresting as the facial features do not convey much individuality.

Satrapi's dramatic young life so far has been anything but uninteresting. So the film should attract those interested in women's issues and politics in specialty venues. However, Sony Pictures Classics will have to market hard to reach out to adult moviegoers beyond those categories in North America.

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