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imagine only yesterday combined with waltz with bashir, all drawn and animated by one and you get the lovely little film called persepolis.
went in with low expectations and was just absolutely blown away by this film! i fell in love by the first 15 minutes and it just got better and better. while the story was generally what i expected it to be, holy shit man it got really grim at parts. especially more when marjane is young, which cleverly emphasizes the danger and makes it all the more frightening, when seen through the eyes of a child who really shouldn't be seeing any of this. another benefit of having a child protagonist (or a child at heart, when she eventually grows into a woman) is the amount of charm you can infuse into the story and how it's told.
oh my god, for such a downer subject matter, this movie fucking oozes charm. i think that's the movie's greatest positive, instead of being this bland, depressing, typical look into the life of iranians during this war, it infuses the more dramatic elements with humorous ones as to not bombard the audience with just constant misery. there are still those serious scenes where the stakes are real and life does get horrifying, but levity is important, too. persepolis is just so fun to watch, man. not only do we have an adorable and genuinely lovable protagonist like marjane, but the animation and editing just complement eachother so well and deliver some of the best jokes in the movie. standouts that come to mind are the crazy teacher with her shitty dog and the entire 'eye of the tiger' sequence.
i have to bring up the animation, which, while simple and rough around the edges in spots, is also a treat. i was pleasantly surprised with how creative, adventurous, and just how well-done it could be at times. special props to the black and white, which is extremely pretty and leads to some wallpaper-worthy shots. i also do have to bring up those rough edges i pointed out earlier, though. the film used motion blur for comedy and switched to tweening-style animation for a couple sequences and i wasn't really a fan. it's a small detriment, but one nonetheless. i gotta say something negative in this review!
i guess i could also bring up how some plot points weren't really fleshed out much beyond their introduction (like the whole prophet thing) and how the film feels kind of repetitive (especially when marjane is in vienna), but these things didn't affect the film in any major way. i love this movie, and i'm so glad it surprised me. might be good to go in with low expectations like i did, but that'll probably be hard after this gush of a review.
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