Jafar Panahi's This Is Not A Film is a one-of-a-kind, self-reflective documentary about the filmmaker living under house arrest as he awaits news on his appeal. Depicting the day-to-day life of Jafar Panahi, a man who is restless but surprisingly comfortable all things considered, This Is Not A Film captures a man who has nothing but time, as he talks to his family and lawyer about his prison sentence - 20 years banned from filmmaking, and 6 year prison sentence, and reflects with his close friend Mirtahmasb about the state of their country and most importantly the meaning, artistry, and importance of filmmaking. This Is Not A Film's greatest achievement is its ability to capture the power of artistic expression, showing how it can never be completely vanquished, just slowed down. Forbidden from filmmaking, Panahi spends countless hours experimenting with his latest screenplay, adapting his characters to fit his current plight, even going as far as to map out the main protagonists's small apartment using masking tape on his Panahi's living room floor. This Is Not A Film beautifully captures the importance of filmmaking and artistic expression, whether it be in its ability to document life itself or organically create human emotion through collaboration. Jafar Panahi's overall demeanor is astonishing, given the circumstances, with his ability to create, no matter how small a story, keeping his spirits high. Taking place in Teheran, where Panahi lives, This is Not A Film subtlety reminds the viewer of the instability and chaos of the region, juxtaposing this lack of freedom and chaos in the country with the importance of artistic freedom.
Love of all things cinema brought me here.