A Report about Mina
IRAN / 2014 / Persian / Color / Blu-ray / 54 min
Director, Photography Producer: Kaveh Mazaheri
Assistant Director: Fatemeh Azizi
Editing: Pooyan Sholevar
Sound: Ahmad Afshar
Sound Mixing: Hassan Shabankareh
Source: Kaveh Mazaheri
Mina lives amidst trash in the corner of a park in Tehran. With the news on the radio in the background, she is oblivious to the hubbub of the New Year’s celebrations as she plays with a stray dog. At night, while standing around a fire, she trades banter with other homeless people who come looking for drugs and cigarettes. Mina dreams of a normal life—she too has a past, in which she lived with a husband and ended the life of their unborn child. For fourteen days the camera follows Mina, who has become a kind of godmother to the stray dogs and homeless people living in the park.
[Director’s Statement] When I was nine, my mother died. After I lost my mother, my father abandoned us, leaving my brother and me to fend for ourselves. My father too passed away eight years later, when I was seventeen. Two years after that, someone told me one day at a family gathering that he had once seen my father begging in the park. For all these years I have had a question in my mind: “why did my father end up in the streets and leave us behind, never coming back?” And I decided to make a film about a homeless person.
A Report about Mina is an attempt to root out the mystery of my father’s life. When I met Mina, I realized that she must be the one I had sought all these years. Mina is a woman living full of hope in a park in Tehran.
I decided to go to Mina during the New Year’s holiday, when most Iranian people are having fun alongside their families and friends. I had been visiting Mina’s place and talking to her and others there since six months earlier, and I had somehow become their friend. I turned on my camera and just tried to record my observations. I planned only to watch, without any interfering, hoping to find an answer about my obsession about my father. My obsession had a small change: now I also wonder why Mina lives in such conditions without even trying to get out.
Born 1981 in Tehran, Iran. An interest in cinema led Mazaheri to begin writing film criticism for Iranian magazines after graduating from college in 2004. His first short film, Tweezers (2007), was censored in Iran. To date, he has made three independent short films and more than twenty short and long documentaries for broadcast on Iranian television. His work has been officially selected by festivals in Iran including the Tehran International Short Film Festival and the “Cinema Vérité” Iran International Documentary Film Festival. He is the editor and author of many projects aside from his own. Some of the films he has directed include Soori’s Trip (documentary, 2009), Labyrinth (a docudrama series, 2013, fifteen episodes), and Cockroach (fiction short, 2015).