Avaze gonjeshk-ha (The Song of Sparrows)

2009

Avaze gonjeshk-ha (The Song of Sparrows)

Critics Consensus

A heartfelt, affecting parable, The Song of Sparrows is another gem from Iranian director Majid Majidi.

98%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 41

87%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 2,184
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Movie Info

Fired from his job on an ostrich farm after one of the birds runs away and he is blamed for the loss, a man becomes so obsessed with collecting useless rubbish that he begins to neglect his wife and daughter while becoming completely oblivious to their familial hardships. Karim earned a decent living by working on the ostrich farm, so after he is fired he sets out on a futile attempt to locate the bird. One day, as Karim heads into town in order to have his daughter's hearing aid repaired, he offers a lift to a wandering man and decides that there is good money in the taxi business. But as his connection to the people of the city grows stronger, his personality begins to transform. Every day, Karim returns home with a new haul of useless junk, giving his picturesque courtyard the appearance of a sprawling junkyard. When his wife offers a spare door from the courtyard to a neighbor in need, Karim completely looses his cool and sets out to retrieve the door. When Karim stumbles and breaks his foot while rummaging through his second-hand goods, the kindness of neighbors makes him realize that his priorities have taken a turn for the worse.

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Critic Reviews for Avaze gonjeshk-ha (The Song of Sparrows)

All Critics (41) | Top Critics (18)

Audience Reviews for Avaze gonjeshk-ha (The Song of Sparrows)

  • Dec 29, 2012
    The Song of Sparrows is about ostrich-rancher Karim being fire from his jobs as he struggles to support his rural family in Iran. It tells a simple story in an effective manner. This film feature characters that are simple becoming more dynamic through the course of the film. These characters are wonderfully portrayed by the actors making this film a joy to watch. The actors make this a film worth investing in alone. It's visually interesting, heart wrenching, fun, and most important of all captivating. There's never a dull moment in this well made Iranian film. The Song of Sparrows is a must watch for any movie lover. It's simple story that convey many emotions and in very artistic and heartfelt story that is easy to enjoy. Not much else to say, except go see it if you have not already.
    Caesar M Super Reviewer
  • Sep 02, 2011
    A film that could only be seen at a number of film festivals and that's why I am thankful there are Film Festivals. This movie is from Iraq and its about a man who works on a ostrich farm until one gets away, then he goes to Tehran where he is mistaken for a motorcycle cabbie. Just an over all good movie about life of one man in Iraq. 5 Stars
    Bruce B Super Reviewer
  • Feb 23, 2011
    Directed by Majid Majidi, this award-winning and wonderfully moving film follows Karim, a simple man who leaves his pastoral life and travels to Tehran. Entangled in a fast-paced world of materialism and greed, he looks to his family to restore his values. The film is a combination of quiet contemplation, whimsy, yet, t's a leisurely and lovely picture, often sentimental, sometimes humorous, hence, it's well worth seeing. Reza Najie plays Karim, a grizzled ostrich handler in late middle age who is fired from his ranch for losing one of his enormous charges. The escaped bird, lost in the high-desert hills outside Tehran, haunts the borders of the movie from then on. Desperate for money to replace his deaf daughter's broken hearing aid, Karim takes on odd jobs, works as a motorcycle-cab driver, and deals in used objects obtained both ethically and otherwise. Karim moves slowly toward a moral, spiritual and physical crisis, apparently mirrored in his young son's belief that he can become a millionaire by raising fish in an abandoned water cistern. One day, Karim's son is playing near the wall of objects and Karim, seeing the objects disturbed, yells at his son, which sparks an argument with his wife. Later, Karim insists that a blue door, which he found and his wife had given away to a friend, be returned to the wall of objects. In a wonderful aerial shot, we see Karim trudging across the open fields with the blue door upon his back. Blue is a significant color, the shade of the heavens and therefore of sacred things. In the incongruent image of a door absent its mooring, Majidi creates a sublime metaphor for Karim's spiritual disharmony. Soon afterward, the wall of objects collapses and Karim, seriously injured by its fall, lies in his sick bed, forced to become an observer in the lives of his family and friends. Wonderful touches of humour punctuate Karim's spiritual crisis, although Majidi's comedy is never accomplished at the expense of his character: Karim maintains his dignity, and because he does, there is a nobility to all of the choices he makes, even the ones that put him on the wrong path. People of faith will see divinity in The Song of Sparrows, and the rest of us the presence of something greater than ourselves, a perfection that can only be understood in observation of another person's life. In the same way that the incapacitated Karim gains back his strength in observation of the quotidian, so, too, are we reconnected to an unchanging force of nature, to the composition of the human soul, as we witness this simple man's profound recognition of all that is good about his life.
    Cinema F Super Reviewer
  • Dec 21, 2010
    An ok movie. Some of the scenes are just great, like trying to find the ostrich, discovering all the things you can transport on a motorbike (answer: Lots!), cleaning a sewer and trying to get a hearing aid. Still, these moments seem to have happened more by accident than design -- short stories stitched together. All this could have led to a nice conclusion, but it seemed to go really nowhere to me.
    Cynthia S Super Reviewer

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