Nobody Knows About the Persian Cats

2009, Drama, 1h 46m

62 Reviews 2,500+ Ratings

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critics consensus

Bringing a dose of humor and a fresh perspective to a very serious subject, No One Knows About Persian Cats is an exhilarating, quietly powerful tribute to the courage of Iran's underground musicians. Read critic reviews

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Movie Info

Two young musicians, Negar (Negar Shaghaghi) and Ashkan (Ashkan Koshanejad), are released from prison. They immediately immerse themselves in the underground rock scene in Tehran, Iran -- "underground" because playing in public venues is outlawed. They plan to escape from their repressive country to play a concert in Europe, but first they need to find a rhythm section and some passports. They place their hope in Nader (Hamed Behdad), a savvy fixer who promises to get them to their gig.

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News & Interviews for Nobody Knows About the Persian Cats

Critic Reviews for Nobody Knows About the Persian Cats

All Critics (62) | Top Critics (26) | Fresh (59) | Rotten (3)

  • What really distinguishes the film-banned in Iran, it goes without saying-is the enormous risks these musicians take, which Ghobadi ultimately drives home with legitimate dramatic license.

    July 1, 2013 | Full Review…
  • An appealing cast of aspiring young musicians ostensibly play themselves in this naive, shapeless, but often fascinating 2009 drama.

    December 30, 2010 | Full Review…
  • No One Knows About Persian Cats ends on a sudden note of tragedy that almost ruins the exuberant spirit of everything that has preceded it.

    May 19, 2010 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…
  • Ghobadi has emerged as a filmmaker whose gift for poetic realism was only equaled by an unerring sense of precisely when and how to break the viewer's heart.

    May 14, 2010 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
  • Over and over, the movie stops in its tracks to listen to musicians play, offering witness to their travails and ingenuity.

    May 13, 2010 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
  • The underground music scene in Tehran comes to life in all these different sort of clandestine studio scenes.

    May 10, 2010

Audience Reviews for Nobody Knows About the Persian Cats

  • Jan 26, 2012
    Since music was first invented, young people have wanted to put on a show. That's no less true in the spirited movie, "No One Knows about Persian Cats," which is based on real incidents. The only problem for the protagonists is that they live in Tehran where such happenings are seriously frowned upon and the musicians face jail time if caught. So, Negar(Negar Shaghaghi) and Askhan(Ashkan Koshanejad) want out, preferably to London but Ashkan is lacking a passport. So, they go to Nader(Hamed Behdad), a fixer/bootlegger who not only finds them a guitarist but also a counterfeiter. Now, they could also use another woman singer since the rules forbid Negar from being the only female singer in a band for a concert they are planning to put on to raise the necessary funds. They are not the only musicians affected as the movie tours the Tehran music scene which is mostly literally underground, as the musicians find creative places to practice(But, oh, those poor cows!), with music that ranges from traditional to heavy metal to rap. While I ordinarily find music videos in films to be beyond cliche, here it works well.(The highlight here is the one for a rap song called "A City Where Everything You See Entices You.") Even though "No One Knows about Persian Cats" can be a little pedantic and overstated at times in railing against the injustices of the system(That probably explains the scene with the dog.), it still has plenty to say about the post-revolutionary generation. They are simply trying to express themselves, not rebelling necessarily(although Nader has a photo of Marlon Brando from "The Wild One" on his wall), with ironically western influences, and who as the film states, the country is in danger of losing.
    Walter M Super Reviewer
  • Mar 12, 2011
    lots of music... no movie. yeh it's alright though so far as getting a message across goes
    Sanity Assassin ! Super Reviewer
  • Jan 10, 2011
    Decent music, but it took all I had to just stay awake during this film. My god, could they have made it any more slow moving?? sheesh
    Cynthia S Super Reviewer
  • Sep 07, 2010
    The music is the true star of this movie and it doesn't disappoint there, showing us in an almost documentary style about the struggles of Iranian citizens to express themselves through art. A very interesting look into a different culture - I justh wish the ending were different since I found it unnecessary and there are many ways the idea of it could have been expressed better.
    Quinto W Super Reviewer

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