Dir. Samira Makhmalbaf
Iran, 2000, 85 mins
BLACKBOARDS is the second film from Samira Makhmalbaf. It is a stark and austere depiction of life after the Iran-Iraq war. It follows a group of displaced Kurdish teachers who travel through the mountains of Halabcheh, a border city in Iraq, with blackboards strapped to their backs, offering their services as educators and fellow refugees. Winner of the Grand Jury prize at the 2000 Cannes Film Festival, the film manages to shed light on the aftermath of a highly destructive war on a micro level, as well as explore the idea of survival in general.