Marjane Satrapi's autobiographical graphic novels detail her childhood in Tehran from the overthrow of the Shah through the years of Ayatollah Khomeini's Islamic fundamentalist regime and the Iran-Iraq war.
This gripping personal journey from childhood through adolescence, sexual awakening to an unhappy marriage has been transformed by Satrapi and co-writer-director Vincent Parranaud into a series of animated comic-book images that provide a strangely magical viewing experience, and create an emotional terrain that's both poignant and humorous. Satrapi is encouraged by her loving parents to flee Tehran for Vienna but life there is bittersweet. Homesickness propels her to don a veil and return home. As she sits in an airport watching planes arrive and depart, we see that she will always be in a state of exile.
Catherine Deneuve, Chiara Mastroianni and Danielle Darrieux provide the impressive emotional voices in a film that mixes personal reminiscence and political history in a way unlike anything you've seen before.