During the 60’s and 70’s thousands of Israelis are living in Tehran, enjoying a special relationship with the Shah and his dictatorial rule. Protected by large arms deals and complex financial ties, the Israeli community enjoys a wealthy and luxurious lifestyle; failing to note that the corrupt and despised ruling power to which they are connected, is collapsing. By the time they understand that their ‘Iranian Paradise’ is turning into hell, it is almost too late, and they stand to find themselves in the middle of the Islamist revolution, due to take Iran by storm. Using rare archive footage, interviews with diplomats, Mossad agents, businessmen and their families, the director – whose family had been part of the very same community – reveals a new perspective on the revolution that changed the world.
What starts as a nostalgic look at a lost era, becomes a thrilling story where huge dreams are shattered in a dark reality of greed, blindness and lust for power.
NIF Film Club discussed this film with NIF’s VP of Public Engagement Libby Lenkinski and director Dan Shadur.
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Dan Shadur is an Israeli filmmaker and writer. His debut documentary Before The Revolution was funded by Yes Docu and ITVS, premiered in Hotdocs 2013 and featured in dozens of other international festivals. It was the first ever Israeli documentary to be broadcast inside Iran. His film King Bibi is the most watched documentary on Yes Docu Channel in recent years. His work aired on PBS, Arte, ZDF and other broadcasters, and was reviewed and mentioned in The New York Times, Der Spiegel, The Washington Post and many more. Shadur’s articles and stories have been featured in Israel’s leading newspapers and magazines. He is a graduate of the Tel Aviv University Steve Tisch School of Film and Television.