Archive of films Turtles Can Fly / Lakposhta hâm parvaz mikonand

Iran / Iraq
2004, 98 min

Section: Horizons
Year: 2005

Everyone at a Kurdish refugee camp on the Turkish-Iraqi border waits hopefully for the Americans to arrive. Thirteen-year-old Kak, nicknamed Satellite, leads a group of local kids who earn a living collecting unexploded landmines. This is the reverse face of war, cruel and painful. A film by the first Kurdish director in the history of Iranian cinematography.


Things are buzzing at a refugee camp on the Turkish-Iraqi border where Kurds have fled from the surrounding villages. Everyone is waiting for the Americans to finally arrive. In this arid wasteland, where there is almost no radio or television signal, information is worth gold — if there were anything to buy it with. Here, the poorest of the poor struggle to survive from one day to the next. Thirteen-year-old Kak, nicknamed Satellite, becomes the unwritten leader of a group of local kids who live in tents at the camp. The majority of them are disabled orphans with only one paradoxical way of making money: collecting and selling the leftover unexploded landmines which the local area is literally infested with. One day a brother and sister arrive at the camp from a village over the hill; they have suffered a terrible trauma. This is the other face of war, full of blood, fear and pain, which can turn a child’s heart to stone.

About the director

Bahman Ghobadi

Bahman Ghobadi (b. 1968) was born in Baneh, a small town in Iranian Kurdistan. At age twelve, he and his family were forced to leave the region; they resettled in Sanandaj, the centre of Kurdish Iran. From there
Ghobadi set out for Teheran to study film. He didn’t finish, however, and began working in industrial photography. From there it was just a short step to a movie camera and 8 mm film. He started out as a documentarist, and in the mid nineties his short films won a number of awards (e.g. at festivals in Aspen and Clermont-Ferrand). The documentary short Life in Fog (Zendegi dar meh, 1997) opened his way to the world. Two years later he shot the feature A Time for Drunken Horses (Zamani barayé masti asbha, 1999), followed by Marooned in Iraq (Gomgashtei dar Aragh, 2002), Tambourine (Daf, 2003), The War Is Over (2004) and Turtles Can Fly (2004). Ghobadi is the first Kurdish director in the history of Iranian cinematography.


BAC Films
9, rue Pierre Dupont, 75010, Paris
Tel: +33 180 491 000
E-mail: [email protected]

Mij Film Co.
Apt. 1 #16 Sarv Alley, Africa Blvd., , Tehran
Tel: + 98 21 888 6072
Fax: + 98 21 888 6071-2
E-mail: [email protected]

About the film

Color, 35 mm

Section: Horizons
Director: Bahman Ghobadi
Screenplay: Bahman Ghobadi
Dir. of Photography: Shahriar Assadi
Music: Hossein Ali Zadeh
Editor: Mostafa Khergheh Poosh, Haydeh Safi Yari
Producer: Bahman Ghobadi
Production: Mij Film Co.
Cast: Avaz Latif, Soran Ebrahim, Saddam Hossein Feysal
Contact: BAC Films, Mij Film Co.

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