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Women Without Men

Women Without Men
Scene from "Women Without Men" (photo © Essential Filmproduktion GmbH)

Against the tumultuous backdrop of Iran’s 1953 CIA-backed coup d’état, the destinies of four women converge in a beautiful orchard garden, where they find independence, solace and companionship. Acclaimed video artist Shirin Neshat makes her directorial debut with this incisive and sumptuously filmed reflection on the pivotal moment in history that directly led to the Islamic revolution and the Iran we know today.


Shirin Neshat is an Iranian born artist and filmmaker whose work addresses the complex social and religious forces shaping the identity of Muslim women. Neshat was recognized for her portraits of women overlaid with calligraphy in the Women of Allah series. She directed several videos, among them Turbulent (1998), which won her the International Award at the 48th Venice Biennale in 1999, as well as Rapture (1999), and numerous other video installations. Her solo exhibitions include shows at the Tate Gallery, London; Guggenheim Museum, New York; The Museum of Contemporary Arts, Athens; The Serpentine Gallery, London; Kunsthalle Vienna; Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art. Women Without Men (2009) is her feature directorial debut.
Genre Drama
Category Feature
Year of Production 2009
Director Shirin Neshat
Screenplay Shirin Neshat
Cinematography Martin Gschlacht
Cast Shabnam Tolouie, Arita Shahrzad, Pegah Ferydoni, Orsi Tóth
Producers Martin Gschlacht, Philippe Bober, Susanne Marian
Production Company Essential Filmproduktion, in co-production with coop99 filmproduktion
Length 99 min
Format color
Original Version
 Persian
Subtitled Versions English, Italian
Sound Technology Dolby SRD
Festivals Venice 2009 (In Competition), Toronto 2009, Tallinn Black Nights 2009, Sundance 2010, Rotterdam 2010, Istanbul 2010, CPH:PIX Copenhagen 2010, Karlovy Vary 2010, Melbourne 2010, Kerala 2010
Awards Silver Lion Best Direction Venice 2009

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