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The Quadric-aspect Relationship of Samira and I

Sat, 10/06/2000 - 14:30

Mohsen Makhmalbaf
June 2000

The quadric-aspect relationship of Samira and I
“ The role of the victim in the occurrence of the crime”

Or
“ What slipped my tongue”
 
You could read this note based on whatever title you like. In depends on your own mentality to choose whichever title you prefer. For me all of them have the same meaning. I would try to explain my relationship with my family, you, them and me but regarding Samira it is a bit different.
 
Fatherhood aspect
I have a quadric-aspect relationship with Samira. Before anything I am her father with all fatherhood sensations. In this regard I am totally emotional. For example I am worried if she has had her food or not. And if she is sick has she gone to the doctor or not. If she has gone to the doctor has she had her medication? Isn’t she tired? Isn’t she hopeless? If her competitors have denied her because of jealousy has she been able to forgive them all on her own? Has she been able to forget the issue after a day of being upset and instead of thinking about what they have said to think about their jealousy and forgive them? In this regard I always tell her to think like doctors and forgive your patients as in this country the mental disease of jealousy is more popular than the physical disease of catching a cold. Forgive as if you don’t the disease is contagious and the chronic form is fatal and if you get effected by it you wont be able to distinguish your own complexes and you would be put away from the path you were going and instead sit and deny the way that others are going.
 
I was saying that I have a quadric-aspect relationship with Samira and before anything I am a father to her with all fatherhood sensations. Because of this I always tell her that the society of Iran, which has newly became civil, is the same previous village society. The village land is thirsty. Its fruitless trees have a desire to grow and unfortunately there is not enough water. Therefore a fight comes up over dividing the water and this fight over water in the village society has changed into a thousand of other fights in the city. So forgive the village, which is fighting for the thirst of its land even if it has become a city by now. Forgive it for the growth desire of its fruitless trees. You should even forgive yourself as they say that those whom think about their enemies a lot become like the enemy and is it possible to be so envious and not to be envied by everyone? Forgive them. Forgive yourself and forgive me as you think about them a lot and I think about you.
 
Dự đoán kết quả xổ số miền bắc I always think have I taught you how to be a human as much as I have taught you art and cinema. Oh my god, I have to let go of these unknown sensations, in a time that numerous fathers are seeking bread for their girls, which gnosticism am I seeking for you?

Friendship aspect
The second aspect of my relationship with her is friendship. In this aspect I even argue with her father that she has grown up now. It is none of your business!!! She isn’t a child for you to interfere in her life. Till when do you want to be her morale teacher? Actually her only problem is your fatherhood. She would grow up without your morale and materialistic sensations. Her growth depends on your omission. As the father denial process is seen in the growth process of every young person. Because of this I stop Samira’s father through the friendship aspect and I say: Look Mohsen, let go. It is no use. Whatever you say, even if it were definite truth would be of no use. She would deny you to become independent and gain her self- confidence. She would stand in front of you and would not listen to what you say and even if what you have said would be useful for her she would deny it because you have mentioned it. Not because she is against it but to complete her youth. If you are very smart mention irrelevant and wrong matters now. Say exactly the opposite of what you really want to say. So that by denying them she would not loose the truth and at the same time gain her spiritual maturity.
 
By the way about which truth that I have and she does not should I talk? In this regard I would deny my smartness despite my friendship and knowledge about her and I would forget that she would notice my trick and I have forgotten my own philosophy that the truth is scattered around and not in the hands of only one person and that in the truth perspective not only truth is relative but it is generation-wise.
 
I mention this to my mother at times that I am being a friend to myself. When I go to my mothers house after two months she is still worried if I eat well or not. Is my pillow soft, are my clothes clean, and is my hair neat or not. What if anyone has made me upset, she always says: “why have you become so thin again?” and if she was always correct then nothing would have been left from me by now. And when my children tell her: “Dear Aziz, this man is not your child any more, he is our father.” She doesn’t want to accept it and she keeps spoiling and cuddling me and no matter how much they tell her: “ Dear Aziz, when you are not around, our father whom is your child, works his life out without you, who is his mother. Then let go.” But my mother, whom is their grandmother, never lets go. In this regard the friendship aspect of my children prevails the aspect of them being my children and they stand in front of my mother just like when the friendship aspect of me stands in front of Samira’s fatherhood aspect and argues with him and stops him.   
 
Teaching aspect
 
My third aspect is teaching Samira. I am the most long-lasting teacher of Samira. Do you think that this could be an adjective? In a time that for each substantive there are 2000 adjectives, from pertaining to party believers to fighting unbelievers, from lewd and paramour and oppressor to knowledgeable and ignorant and negligent and false why is the adjective of this substantive teacher “long-lasting”? Because there is no other adjective that I could use for myself that I myself would believe it. I ask myself if I have been her best teacher or not? If I weren’t her best teacher then who was I? Whatever I was, Samira has had her most long-lasting educations with me. At least I was her script writing, decoupage, actor guidance, planning, editing, sound, film review and human science teacher. Around 4 years in a row and something less then 20 years as a non-constant teacher. Both in theory and practice. This teaching aspect of me is even more importunate compared to my fatherhood aspect. Especially after my wife died everyday I have been wondering that I would die in near future as well and what would these children, whom their presence in this complicated existence is related to me as well, do with all the simplicity and ignorance? Negligent of the fact that what I have done in this complicated existence with all my own ignorance and what our fathers had done for all the complication of existence and the civil society. Which father’s knowledge insured his child’s ignorance against the complication of existence for mine to do that?!
 
But my teaching aspect is stubborn. It wouldn’t let go. In this regard it is more stupid than any lazy student. The only thing it knows is learning, even if the class has no students. Even if it is forced to carry it’s insignificant blackboard on his shoulders and wander in the loneliness of the mountains and go through vagrancy and homelessness. That is why I keep finding books and make notes of the important subjects so that the children read it and I keep putting classes even in the car, parties and in trips. From one-month classes to daily, hourly and even minutely classes. I say: Look Samira, look Maysam, Look Hana, What I am saying now is a class subject. I know you don’t have time but my class would only take one minute. The name of this class is “common pain”. If what has caused you pain is a public pain then shout it out in your film, photograph and story. If it is a personal pain and is related to you, bare it on your own. Or if you can’t shout it out, shout it somewhere that only your own eyes could see it and only your own ears could hear it. Never misuse the public eye and ear for personal reasons.
 
And suddenly I see myself with a blackboard on my shoulders, unfinished and without any customers. There are customers, not that there aren’t any, but their spirits are somewhere else. 10 people are waiting for interviews. Western, eastern and citizen and they are all upset because it has become late and Samira is angry with me and all of them because she still has a childish world to face, and the blame is on herself in this regard. And she has a lot of youth acts to conduct, which I might be to blame for. Maybe it is her own fault or it might be somebody else’s fault. In the existence of effects, which cause is most major in between the series of causes? I don’t know. Everyone and no one. No one because according to the famous proverb, “I forgave, whoever I got to know” and everyone, even herself as we have a term in law named “The role of the victim in the occurrence of the crime” and we have a gene in genetics named “ the artist gene”, a prevailing gene that outstands other sides such as childhood and youth. Just as we have genes for addiction, love, belief and blasphemy. Anyhow in this aspect I am still an incomplete teacher. And this incompletion bothers me and I insist on finishing the teachings of the children and worse than that I am still an incomplete student for myself. All these unread books, all these undiscovered truths, all these vision angles that have not been angled yet. Oh useless life I am incomplete and fed up with you. At the end I ask myself in a dazzled manner: which one am I? Father? Friend? Teacher? Colleague? How much of each am I and until when? And why? How could I be so much of a father for Samira, Hana and Maysam in front of all the orphans and in between all the lonely people how could I be so much of a friend for my family and friends and by knowing all these needy people how could I be a teacher for only 100 students and assistants that I have had up to now? To be or not to be? To be? Why? Not to be? Why?
 
Questions are useless and the answers more useless. But whatever there is it is not playing with words. It is the pain of the non-existence of a relationship between the generations or even a generation with itself or even a person with himself. They say that after hunger loneliness is the major problem of humanity.
 
Fourth aspect: colleague
 
As I said I have a quadric-aspect relationship with Samira. I am her father. I am her friend. I am her teacher and her colleague. Especially regarding the script plans and editing I have been her colleague up to now. In this regard I am completely the second person. Experience has taught me that in the cinema director says the first words and the rest of the people are considered as the second person. Therefore regarding editing and script I was as a special assistant for Samira and not as a second author. The script plan of Blackboard, which is from me, is the synopsis of a story that has become a script while filming it. The dialogues, relationships and characters are all by Samira. Regarding the editing part I helped Samira as a specialist in working with the montage table-as I am faster than Samira. Otherwise she knows how to work with the montage table even though she is a bit slower than me. And then I allowed her film to be shown the way that the director desired. Then I started objecting about the movie. But I still left her the Veto rights and wherever she did not accept my objections I agreed with her even though it was a heavy burden for my experiences and me.
 
In the fourth aspect despite the other aspects I have always been very open-handed and my relationship has been very vast, although hidden. I have edited about 23 official movies and a few unofficial movies up to now. Between the official editions half of them has been my own movies and half of them belonged to others. Regarding the unofficial ones either both or one of the parties wanted my name to be kept as a secret. Sometimes I see my name all around so much that I think that the only nice place left to find my name is on the last stone.
 
Regarding the story and script everything was even more scattered around than this. First of all I cannot hold my mouth. I might explain a plan for anyone and it has happened a lot that people have either stolen my plans or taken it away in a complementary way. If it were taken away complementarily I have asked the artist not to bring my name even as simply thanking me, which sometimes they have and when they have stolen it I have forgotten it and I have thought to myself that my thoughts have been vaster than my performing capabilities. Sometimes such great people have stolen my ideas and writings that I was surprised. Therefore I won’t tell you so that you don’t become surprised. Don’t be surprised it is not good. Usually I have forgotten it. Some people have stolen my ideas whom think exactly 180 degrees opposite me or at least claim to be like this and part of their daily activity is to name adjectives for substantives like me. But it does not bother me or people like me. and I am happy that they have been contaminated by my thoughts, even if they have stolen my ideas and thoughts. In this regard I have the same feeling as the accursed devil. The more people get contaminated with my thoughts I become happier as I am spreading the hell that I would burn in one day. Or maybe I am finding accomplices to divide the punishment.
 
Sometimes when I feel that I love Samira so much I wish that she wasn’t my daughter, I wish she wasn’t my student and I wish that she even wasn’t my friend and I wish that she was only a colleague.
 
I don’t know maybe I have written this article from shame of all those girls and boys whom I never managed to be a father for.