Chess Of The Wind Review
This 1976 film travels to New York with the perfect restoration story. The Iranian movie “Chess of the Wind” produced there and only briefly shown before it outlawed during the turbulent time leading up to the Islamic revolution. Presumed lost, the film’s negative turned up in a junk shop years later. Then eminent film organizations stepped in to make it available worldwide. I’m happy to report that the film itself, which was helmed by Mohammad Reza Aslani, who has primarily directed documentaries. Since his troubles with “Chess,” has a lot going for it besides just being rediscovered.
Movie’s Plot, Cast And Theme:
“Chess” is a fevered melodrama presented in a poetically measured style. And set on a sprawling estate in early 20th-century Tehran. The film’s opening scenes are mysterious. A young woman in a wheelchair appears to be angry and breaks some bottles. A figure with patriarchal characteristics smokes with colleagues. Before engaging in what appear to be shady transactions using scrolls and rubber stamps.
With a gracefully moving camera that doesn’t immediately reveal all the secrets a scene may hold. Aslani ties disparate plot threads together. Indeed, Hadji Amoo (Mohamad Ali Keshavarz) regards himself as the leader of this household. However, the ailing Lady Aghdas who is lamenting the loss of her mother, refuses to accept Hadji as her stepfather. Let alone as the owner of the estate. Agendas plan to usurp him with the help of her scheming handmaiden (Shohreh Aghdashloo).
It is understandable why the oppressive theocracy in Iran objected to this film. hints of a lesbian romance, for sure. In addition, Aslani’s mendacity which includes phony suitors, hidden lovers, and other bizarre elements is tangible and occasionally seductive. It would be an overstatement to refer to this movie as a recently discovered masterwork. But “Chess of the Wind” undoubtedly a notable illustration of an Iranian cinematic movement. Ayatollahs made sure eliminated when they took power in 1979.
Overall, Chess of the Wind is a brilliant illustration of how well-known genres and tones can combine to create something that seems wholly original. Along with the ferocious urgency of impending change, it also carries corrupt corruption, stagnant rot of classism, and gender inequality. Even as the tides of revolution threaten to make their entire purpose moot, it is fascinating to watch these two realities constantly collide in such small spaces. This makes Aslani’s movie even more brutally depressing than the majority of its American and European genre predecessors.