Walnut Tree (2020 film)

Walnut Tree (Persian: درخت گردو, romanizedDerakht-e Gerdoo) is a 2020 Kurdish- Iranian biographical war drama film directed by Mohammad Hossein Mahdavian and written by Ebrahim Amini and Hossein Hassani.[1] it revolves around the Chemical bombing of Sardasht of 1987.[2][3] The film screened for the first time at the 38th Fajr Film Festival and received 11 nominations.[4] Mahdavian won a Crystal Simorgh for Best Director and Maadi won the Crystal Simorgh for Best Actor for his performance.[5][6]

Walnut Tree
Film poster
Directed byMohammad Hossein Mahdavian
Screenplay by
  • Ebrahim Amini
  • Hossein Hassani
Produced bySeyyed Mostafa Ahmadi
CinematographyHadi Behrouz
Edited byMohammad Najarian
Music by
Distributed byEli Image
Release dates
  • 1 February 2020 (2020-02-01) (FIFF)
  • 1 September 2021 (2021-09-01) (Iran)
Running time
105 minutes
  • Persian
  • Kurdish
Box office3.59 billion toman (Iran)

Plot edit

In 1980, Saddam Hussein, a former Iraqi dictator, invaded neighboring Iran to expand his territory. He thought he would soon win this war. But that did not happen. Annoyed by the prolongation of the war, he decided to end the war with chemical weapons. This the story of a people their prime life suffered the horror of being attacked by chemical bombs.

The film is based on a true story that in the summer of 1987, "Qader Molanpour" (Payman Maadi) lives happily with his pregnant wife and three children in a border village in Kurdistan until an Iraqi fighter drops his only remaining bomb on the village on his way back from the chemical bombing of Sardasht, injuring his family and villagers. Qader arrives in the village and takes his wife and children to the hospital. Qader's spouse, "Maryam" (Minoo Sharifi) is eight months pregnant and therefore not allowed to move, but her three children are being moved to other cities.

Qader tries hard to keep his three seven to eight- year-old children alive, but unfortunately lose them one by one due to the severe exposure. Qader hides their death from Maryam so that she can give birth to her child without grief. The baby is born, but Maryam dies during the delivery and Qader is now alone with a new born baby. The man could no longer endure the pain and finally explodes and screams at the doctor blaming him for his wife's death. He reproaches the doctor for not ending the pregnancy in favor of the mother's health. Qader buries Maryam beside his children beneath a walnut tree in his village. The doctor comes and reveals that Maryam herself was aware of the danger still insisted on giving birth.

The doctor also told Qader that Maryam had already been informed about the death of her children and sacrificed herself to gift her husband this baby. She had even decided on a name, "Zhina" meaning life before her death. Bursting into tears, Qader heads to the hospital to bring his wife's only gift back home but due to the improper condition of the hospital, new-born babies are transferred to other cities and Qader loses his last child in that chaos.

Years later, he is being asked to testify against the use of weapons of mass destruction of The Hague Netherlands city in Court and there he talks to her lost Zhina and wants her to hear his voice but no luck. Qader searches for Zhina everywhere until the last day of his life and finally dies in the snowy winter of 2016 without having a chance to see her.[7]

Cast edit

Production edit

Mohammad Hossein Mahdavian:

I have always tried to make a national film, but I am accused that my films are in defense of the government. But Walnut Tree is both patriotic and a critique of governance.‌

Cinematography edit

For the visual space of the story, old Negative and different cameras have been used for each time period. For the 1987 scenes, A 16mm camera Eclair was used. A 35mm camera was used for the 2005 sequences and a digital camera arri was used for the 2017 sequences.

Simultaneous use of three filming formats in a film project has occurred for the first time in Iranian cinema.

Show at festivals edit

Reception edit

Accolades edit

Year Award Category Recipient Result
2020 Fajr Film Festival[8] Best Film Walnut Tree Nominated
Audience Choice of Best Film Walnut Tree Runner-up
Best Director Mohammad Hossein Mahdavian Won
Best Actor Payman Maadi Won
Best Supporting Actress Minoo Sharifi Nominated
Best Editor Mohammad Najarian Nominated
Best Original Score Habib Khazaeifar Nominated
Best Makeup Shahram Khalaj Nominated
Production Design Mohamadreza Shojaei Nominated
Costume Design Behzad Jafari Tadi Nominated
Special Effects Iman Karamian Nominated
Visual Effects Amir Pahlavan zadeh & Kamyar Shafi pour Nominated
2020 Barcelona Asian Film Festival Best Film Walnut Tree Won
Best Director Mohammad Hossein Mahdavian Won
2021 Hafez Awards Best Motion Picture Walnut Tree Nominated
Best Director – Motion Picture Mohammad Hossein Mahdavian Nominated
Best Actor – Motion Picture Payman Maadi Won
Best Cinematography – Motion Picture Hadi Behrouz Nominated
Best Editor – Motion Picture Mohammad Najarian Nominated
Best Original Score Habib Khazaeifar Nominated
Best Original Song ''Walnut Tree'' (Alireza Ghorbani, Roozbeh Bemani, Habib Khazaeifar) Nominated
2022 Agrandisman Awards Best Photographer Majid Talebi Won
2022 Iran's Film Critics and Writers Association Best Actor in a Leading Role Payman Maadi Nominated
Best Technical Achievement Makeup: Shahram Khalaj Nominated

References edit

  1. ^ نصرالهی, صوفیا (2020-02-11). "برندگان جشنواره فیلم فجر 98 در مراسم اختتامیه اعلام شدند". دیجی‌کالا مگ (in Persian). Retrieved 2021-08-13.
  2. ^ "فیلم درخت گردو (1398) | سلام‌سینما". www.salamcinama.ir. Retrieved 2021-08-13.
  3. ^ "مهران مدیری به "درخت گردو" پیوست | پایگاه خبری تحلیلی سینما سینما". cinemacinema.ir. Retrieved 2021-08-13.
  4. ^ "اسامی فیلم‌های بخش سودای سیمرغ جشنواره فجر38 اعلام شد". جشنواره فیلم فجر (in Persian). Retrieved 2021-08-13.
  5. ^ "سوژه "درخت گردو"ی محمدحسین مهدویان چیست؟". خبرآنلاین (in Persian). 2019-09-29. Retrieved 2021-08-13.
  6. ^ شهرآرانیوز (February 11, 2020). "برگزیدگان سی و هشتمین جشنواره فیلم فجر مشخص شدند". fa (in Persian). Retrieved 2021-08-13.
  7. ^ ""Walnut Tree" on tragedy of Iraqi chemical attack on Sardasht hits theaters". Tehran Times. 2021-06-30. Retrieved 2021-08-13.
  8. ^ نصرالهی, صوفیا (2020-02-11). "برندگان جشنواره فیلم فجر 98 در مراسم اختتامیه اعلام شدند". دیجی‌کالا مگ (in Persian). Retrieved 2021-09-17.

External links edit