Puzzling But Poetic “Gabbeh”

I don’t understand the meaning of the strange Iranian film, Gabbeh (1996).

Its protagonist is a girl who yearns to wed a man who howls exactly like a wolf but doesn’t seem to be one.  He’s a man.  A lot happens, even so—a mystifying lot—before the couple elope on horseback.  Love, resentment, birth, old age, death—the film poetically touches on all these matters.  I haven’t seen any of director Mohsen Makhmalbaf‘s other pictures, but they’re supposed to be political.  This one isn’t.  It appears to have something to do with existential truth, but is as figurative as it is visually entrancing.  I take Makhmalbaf to be an ambitious artist.

Postscript:  I have seen the director’s 2001 film, Kandahar, and was much impressed by it.

Gabbeh (film)

Gabbeh (film) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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