Fish & Cat

Fish & Cat (in Persian : ماهی و گربه; transliterated as Mahi va Gorbeh) is a 2013 mystery drama slasher[1] Iranian film directed by Shahram Mokri about of a group of university students camping at a lakeside for kite-running competitions. The film is notable for being presented in a single, uncut 135-minute shot.[2] The film was first premiered in the Venice Film Festival on 6 September 2013.[3] The film won the Special Award in 2013 Venice Film Festival and the FIPRESCI award in 2014 Fribourg International Film Festival.[citation needed] In September 2015, Fish & Cat was one of ten shortlisted films for Iran's submission for the Best International Feature Film at the 88th Academy Awards, but ultimately was not selected.[4]

Fish & Cat
Mahi Va Gorbeh Poster.jpg
English poster of the film
Directed byShahram Mokri
Written byShahram Mokri
Produced bySepehr Seifi
Kanoon Iran Novin
CinematographyMahmoud Kalari
Music byChristophe Rezai
Distributed byFilmiran (Iran)
Iranian Independents (International)
Release date
  • 6 September 2013 (2013-09-06) (Venice Film Festival)
Running time
134 minutes

Fish & Cat was inspired by the true story of a restaurant in northern Iran that served human flesh in the late 90s. Iranian actors Babak Karimi and Saeid Ebrahimifar, along with young, unknown theatre artists, appeared in the film.[5]

Many critics found the film innovative and technically impressive.[citation needed] The film was screened in Iran in several cinemas, including Azadi Cinema Complex and Kourosh Complex in Tehran and Howeyzeh cinema complex in Mashhad.[6]


A number of students have traveled to the Caspian region in order to participate in a kite-flying event during the winter solstice. Next to their camp is a small hut occupied by three cooks who work at a nearby restaurant.


  • Abed Abest as Parviz
  • Mona Ahmadi as Nadia
  • Ainaz Azarhoush as Parvaneh
  • Nazanin Babaei as Shirin
  • Mohammad Berahmani as Boy
  • Siavash Cheraghipoor as Father
  • Saeed Ebrahimifar as Saeed
  • Alireza Esapoor as Guard
  • Neda Jebraeili as Mina
  • Shadi Karamroudi as Maral
  • Babak Karimi as Babak
  • Mohammad Reza Maleki as Jamshid
  • Faraz Modiri as Kambiz
  • Milad Rahimi as Shahrooz
  • Arnavaz Safari as Asal
  • Nima Shahrabi as Twin
  • Pouya Shahrabi as Twin
  • Khosrow Shahraz as Hamid
  • Pedram Sharifi as Pedram
  • Parinaz Tayyeb as Maryam
  • Samaneh Vafaiezadeh as Ladan


Gradually subverting a gruesome premise drawn from a real-life case of a backwoods restaurant that served human flesh, the film builds an atmosphere of tension as a menacing pair descend on a campsite where a group of college kids have gathered for a kite-flying festival. But as the camera doubles back and criss-crosses between characters in real time, subtle space-time paradoxes suggest that something bigger is going on.[7]

Shahram Mokri said "I like the paintings of Maurits Escher, where you can see a change in perspective in the same visual. In my film, I wanted to give a change in perspective of time in one single shot. So the idea for the film came from his paintings.[8]

Mokri added "Fish & Cat is a film about time. How you can make a perspective in it and break that. This film was interesting for me to make and that was because of its method of production. Insisting on narrating a story in a single shot and try to break the time which goes ahead."


Mokri wanted a kind of music that combined minimal music with the music of horror Z-movies, so he asked Kristoph Rezaee to score the film.[9]

Critical receptionEdit

Manohla Dargis from The New York Times wrote: " It’s a tour de force — the cinematographer is Mahmoud Kalari, who shot A Separation — and as quietly political as it is brazenly cinematic."[10]

Steve MacFarlane from Slant Magazine wrote: "The film is a game: Shahram Mokri challenges his viewers to grip parallel narrative threads in what feels like suspiciously real time, rather than to assemble or contextualize any metaphorical ones."[11]

Alissa Simon from Variety wrote: "“A highly original, compelling feature, filmed in one long, bravura shot establishing Shahram Mokri as a distinctive talent.”[12]



  1. ^ "یک غافلگیری ایرانی / گفت‌و‌گو با شهرام مکری و سعید ابراهیمی‌فر درباره "ماهی و گربه"". Khabar Online.
  2. ^ Clarence, Tsui. "Fish & Cat (Mahi va Gorbeh): Film Review". Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 12 December 2014.
  3. ^ "Fish & Cat (2013) Release Info". Retrieved 12 December 2014.
  4. ^
  5. ^ "Shahram Mokri to Take Part in Three International Film Festivals with "Fish and Cat"". Fars News. Retrieved 13 December 2014.
  6. ^ "خرید بلیت سینما: فیلم ماهی و گربه".
  7. ^ "Fish & Cat 2013".
  8. ^ "Young Iran's love for horror". Retrieved 13 December 2014.
  9. ^ "مهندسی‌شده فیلم ساختیم / "ماهی و گربه" در گفت‌و‌گو با شهرام مکری و سعید ابراهیمی‌فر". Khabar Online.
  10. ^ Dargis, Manohla. "New Directors/New Films Highlights Include 'Fish & Cat'". New York Times. Retrieved 13 December 2014.
  11. ^ MACFARLANE, STEVE. "Fish & Cat; Film Review". Slant Magazine. Retrieved 11 December 2014.
  12. ^ Simon, Alissa. "Venice Film Review: 'Fish & Cat'". Variety. Retrieved 12 December 2014.
  13. ^ "ماهی و گربه". The Official Website of Shahram Mokri. Archived from the original on 2014-10-06. Retrieved 2014-12-12.
  14. ^ "Mahi va gorbeh - Awards". IMDb.

External linksEdit