Terrestrial Verses

Ayeh haye zamini

64th TIFF: Greek Premiere
The spectator of a film is by definition a voyeur, a witness to events that never quite reach the public eye, a judge called upon to assess and pardon or condemn the characters they encounter within the confined space of a theater. However, what transpires when they assume the role of the interrogator, and their voice aligns with that of an oppressive regime? In an unexpected cinematic experiment and through a series of meticulously composed subjective shots, nine individuals facing various accusations by Iranian authorities – from school to police – unveil their genuinely revolutionary spirit before the camera lens, demonstrating that deviance is the only rational choice in an irrational society. At times light-hearted and at other times unbearable, these vignettes that paint a complex societal portrait are adorned with titles of works by the late poet, Forough Farrokhzad. And thus, they evolve into ‘terrestrial verses’ on the lips of those who softly sing for freedom.
Screening Schedule

No physical screenings scheduled.

Available at the Agora Market TIFF64.

Direction: Ali Asgari, Alireza Khatami
Script: Ali Asgari, Alireza Khatami
Cinematography: Adib Sobhani
Editing: Ehsan Vaseghi
Sound: Alireza Alavian, Abdolreza Heydari, Iman Bazyar
Music: Masoud Fayaz Zadeh
Actors: Bahram Ark, Arghavan Shabani, Servin Zabetian, Sadaf Asgari, Faezeh Rad, Hossein Soleymani, Majid Salehi, Farzin Mohades, Gouhar Kheir Andish, Ardeshir Kazemi
Production: Taat Films, Seven Springs Pictures
Producers: Ali Asgari, Milad Khosravi
Co-production: Tell Tall Tale, Cynefilms
Co-producers: Alireza Khatami, Cyrus Neshvad, Reyhaneh Rad
Costumes: Morvarid Kashian
Sets: Hamed Aslani
Make Up: Mehdi Sayad, Omid Golzadeh
Format: DCP
Color: Color
Production Country: Iran
Production Year: 2023
Duration: 77'
Contact: Films Boutique
Awards/Distinctions: Anonimul Trophy Best Feature Film – Αnonimul IFF 2023

Ali Asgari

Ali Asgari is a prominent Iranian cinema figure with more than 200 awards to his name. Two of his short films, More Than Two Hours (2013) and The Silence (2016), were nominated for the Palm d’Or at the Festival de Cannes. The Baby was featured in the short film competition at the Venice Film Festival in 2014. His debut film, Disappearance, was developed at the Cinéfondation Residency of the Festival de Cannes and had its world premiere at the Venice International Film Festival in 2017. Until Tomorrow, his second feature film, premiered at the Berlinale in 2022.


2013 More than Two Hours (short)
2014 The Baby (short)
2016 The Silence (short)
2017 Disappearance
2022 About Me (short)
2022 Until Tomorrow
2023 Terrestrial Verses

Alireza Khatami

Alireza Khatami is an award-winning Iranian-American filmmaker based in Canada. Born into the indigenous Khamse tribe in Iran, he is influenced by his heritage's rich storytelling traditions. His films poignantly investigate the interconnection of memory, trauma, and power dynamics, often through a philosophical lens and with a dark sense of humor. He has worked with esteemed filmmakers such as Asghar Farhadi. His debut feature, Oblivion Verses, developed at the Cinéfondation Residency of the Festival de Cannes, premiered at the Venice Film Festival, winning three awards, including the Orizzonti Award for Best Screenplay and the FIPRESCI Prize.


2010 Focal Point (short)
2013 Mr. Chang’s New Address (short)
2017 Oblivion Verses
2023 Terrestrial Verses