By dint of our armed forces being embroiled in two separate war zones during the past decade, we Americans have done a crash course on Middle Eastern geopolitics. We now know Kabul from Kalamazoo, Mosul from Mobile. But Kurdistan remains as she always was to us: largely an enigma. Kurds are a distinct ethnic group; they're not Arabs, not Persians and certainly not Turks, yet they have no sovereign nation of their own. They've been the victims of brutal political oppression at the hands of various regimes (most infamously, Saddam Hussein's). In Nahid Ghobadi's and Bijan Zamanpira's film About 111 Girls, the plight of modern Kurds is illuminated within the only superficially farcical storyline about 111 young Iranian Kurdish women who petition the Iranian government about the severe deficit of marriageable Kurdish men. Though the film has its comedic moments, its prevailing message is a dead serious one. About 111 Girls screens tonight at 7:30 p.m. at the Moore Auditorium on Webster University's campus (470 East Lockwood Avenue; 314-968-7487 or www.webster.edu/filmseries). Tickets are $5 to $6.
Tue., Dec. 10, 2013