Mani Haghighi, Iran, 2016, DCP, 108′, English subtitles

Screening followed by a talk on Middle Eastern cinema in collaboration with Ekran magazine. Guests: Bernadette Klausberger and Niklas Hlawatsch (producers of Manivelle), Adham Youssef (Berlin based film critic and specialist on Egyptian cinema).

In collaboration with FIVIA film distribution.


A day after the Iranian Prime Minister was shot in front of Parliament in 1965, detective Hafizi undergoes interrogation, while we follow his investigation of the suspicious suicide of an exiled political prisoner on the remote island of Qeshm in the Persian Gulf in flashbacks. On the island, soon revealed as haunted, he stumbles upon an even bigger mystery and sets off to solve it with a quirky geologist and a hippy sound engineer. With multiple perspectives, mocumentary re-enactments, crazy leaps in time and place and surrealist humour, A Dragon Arrives! is all about the nature of truth, myths, paranoia and invention, with its unique style paying homage to the Iranian New Wave.

“In a narrative thick with unreliable narrators and witnesses, none is more slippery than Haghighi himself: His fictional riffing on his real-life family history further fudges the border between which elements of this teasingly tall story are fact-rooted, and which are purest fantasy. /…/ Mani Haghighi’s bold, bewildering mélange of noir, mockumentary and outright fantasy bends itself into one very sexy pretzel.”
– Guy Lodge, Variety