Struggles for Freedom Series: “Rosewater”

Wednesday, 4 November, 7pm – “Rosewater” (2015) will be screened as part of a series of talks and films sponsored by the Political Science Department. These events are made possible through generous grants provided by the Betty Ritchie-Birrer ’47 and Ivan Birrer Endowment Fund.

Watch the trailer here:

From the NYTimes:

MV5BNjY1NjQ1NjMzNl5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwNzU0Mjc1MjE@._V1_SX214_AL_Among its virtues, “Rosewater,” the directorial debut of Jon Stewart, is an argument for filmmakers to start their trade after they’ve looked beyond the limits of their own horizons. This fictional movie tells the story of the real Maziar Bahari, an Iranian-born journalist living in London who was arrested in Iran while covering the 2009 elections for Newsweek. Accused of being an agent for foreign intelligence organizations, he was thrown into the Evin Prison, where he was interrogated and beaten, partly for the surreal reason that he had appeared on “The Daily Show With Jon Stewart.” Mr. Stewart’s interest in the material is obviously personal, but his movie transcends mere self-interest.

Mr. Stewart adapted the movie from Mr. Bahari’s 2011 memoir, which was written with Aimee Molloy and published as “Then They Came for Me” but has been promotionally repackaged as “Rosewater.” The book’s original title echoes the oft-quoted line from the German pastor Martin Niemöller, “Then they came for me — and there was no one left to speak for me.” As a famous call to speaking out (originally against Nazism), it underscores the universal tug of Mr. Bahari’s ordeal even as it carries the complicating weight of the Holocaust. “Rosewater” is the better title, partly because, as Mr. Stewart makes clear, it’s the specifics of Mr. Bahari’s story — his voice, memories, fantasies, ghosts and abiding love of Leonard Cohen — that distinguishes it…

Read the rest here.

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