What do Iranians think of Argo?
While writing the obligatory pre-Oscar Sunday piece about the front-runners for best picture, wondered whether there was an Iranian reaction to Argo, official or unofficial. For Americans, Ben Affleck’s historical thriller with a snappy screenplay by Chris Terrio essentially says, Iranians hate Americans but everyone loves Hollywood.
Two recent dispatches, one from The New York Times and the other from The Wall Street Journal, offer distinctly different perspectives. It figures that The Times reports on reactions to the film’s ideological implications while WSJ notes the high volume of bootleg copies being sold in the Tehran black market.
According to the Times, an attendee at a Tehran colloquium where Argo was discussed denounced the film as promoting the ideology of Hollywoodism. And according to the Journal, over a hundred thousand bootlegs with Farsi subtitles have sold, inspiring much discussion about the events of 1979. It also, says the Journal, has inspired one Iranian filmmaker to conceive a movie showing the same events from his nation’s perspective.
What do you think of Argo and of its Oscar chances?