Monday, July 18, 2011
Children Of Heaven
Children of Heaven (Persian: بچههای آسمان) is a 1997 Iranian film by Majid Majidi. It was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film in 1998. It deals with a brother and sister and their adventures over a lost pair of shoes.
Children of Heaven premiered in February 1997 at the Teheran Fajr Film Festival and was awarded several national film awards. It opened in the US on 22 January 1999, with a total US box office total of $930,000.
Critical response to the film was very positive. Some critics compared it to Vittorio de Sica's 1948 Bicycle Thieves. The few negative voices found fault in a too-simplistic storyline and unanswered questions. Roger Ebert's review in the Chicago Sun-Times called it "very nearly a perfect movie for children" that "lacks the cynicism and smart-mouth attitudes of so much American entertainment for kids and glows with a kind of good-hearted purity".
In 1998, it became the first Iranian film to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, losing to the Italian film Life Is Beautiful by Roberto Benigni. After the film had become well-known worldwide due to the Oscar nomination, it was shown in several European, South American, and Asian countries between 1999 and 2001. It was successfully shown in numerous film festivals and won awards at the Fajr Film Festival, the World Film Festival, the Newport International Film Festival, the Warsaw International Film Festival, and the Singapore International Film Festival. It was nominated for the Jury's Grand Prize at the American Film Institute's festival.