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Until Ahmad Returns – Movie Review

Movie: Until Ahmad Returns 

Original Title: (Ta Amadan Ahmad) تا امدن احمد

Year: 2015

Country of Origin: Iran

Languages: Persian (Mainly) Arabic (Few Dialogues Only)

Genre: Drama, War, History

Until Ahmad Returns Movie Review –

The movie is based on Iraq-Iran war in the 1980s. Karg Island (also. Khark) is a small island in the Persian Gulf, it was bombarded very heavily by the Iraqi Forces during the 8 year long military conflict between both the countries. Although the movie is based on war, but it tells us the “other side” of war. Director Sadegh Daghighi has really done a commendable job and one can easily say that the movie is well directed. One of the outstanding feature of “Until Ahmad Returns” is its acting and background score. The starting and ending music is really very good and touching. Overall, the cinematography and camera work too is great. The special effects could have been a bit better, but given the other satisfying aspects of “Ta Amadan Ahmad” one can easily forget this small flaw.

I watched this film recently in 8th Jaipur International Film Festival (JIFF) – 2016. The movie tells the story of a family who are living on this this island that is being bombarded frequently by the Iraqi Forces. The movie starts on a battlefield where two boys (Irani) are trying to help wounded soldiers. Suddenly, a shot is being fired and one boy gets down. Then the scene is shifted to a house where people are celebrating and singing on a marriage function. The marriage is of a girl named Maryam, she is very happy on her marriage except for the fact that her mother is not there in the house. The marriage is interrupted midway when the father tells the guest that he is going to his wife. As he reaches to his wife, who is missing her son “Ahmad” on her daughter’s marriage, he tries to convince her that Ahmad is his brave son and he will return for her sister’s marriage. The old couple starts moving towards their house. As they reach suddenly fighter jets starts bombing the island’s oil refineries. The marriage is called off and Maryam’s happiness is gone.

Later on, the father finds a wounded man (wearing Iranian Military Uniform) and thinking of helping him he takes the man to his home. This strange man don’t speak to anyone and just looks with empty eyes. Ahmad’s mother thinks him as her son’s friend and always keeps asking him when will Ahmad return? But, he never speaks a word. The film takes another turn when the Maryam’s groom abandons her because he thinks that she is having an affair with that wounded soldier. The biggest twist in the movie comes when some people caught the “wounded soldier” (who is now recovered) stealing a small boat and they returned him to Ahmad’s family, because he was their guest. The father is agitated and asks the man to speak and finally, the soldier breaks his silence and speaks… He tells them that he is an Iraqi soldier and to save himself from being captured, he took away Ahmad’s clothes after he was dead on the battlefield. Everything stops for Ahmad’s family and they decided to send him away from where he came from. As the soldier was going back on a boat in the sea, again the Iraqi planes bombarded the island. In the last scene, the soldier is shown helping the people after the bombardment. His heart might have changed and he could have stayed there….

What To See In Until Ahmad Returns –

This movie shows human emotions at the time of war, and it also tells us that no matter how bad we become there’s still humanity left in all of us.  The pain of Ahmad’s mother and father is very evident and Maryam’s trouble too is very well portrayed. The acting of all the cast is really of high quality as one associates with Irani films. In my view, if you are looking to see something serious and sad then this movie is for you. You will enjoy the human emotions and relations shown in this movie.

My Rating of Until Ahmad Returns –

I gave this film 9/10, mainly because of the direction and good quality acting. The story too is engaging enough.


Image Credit: Press TV. (Iran)


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