The Patience Stone ★★★

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This foreign film (with sub-titles) was written and directed by Atiq Rahimi (published in 33 languages). l r 38 minutes. Cast: Golshifteh Farahani (young mother, wife), Hamid Djavadan, Massi Mrowat, Hassina Burgan.

As the story unfolds we find the husband in a coma with a bullet in his neck due to a random altercation with another Muslim. We are placed into a unnamed war-torn country (the writer was from Afghanistan). Most of the young wife’s friends and family have fled. She remains to care for and protect her husband. Patience stone symbolizes (syngue sabour) a magic stone where one tell’s one’s suffering and secrets till it fills up and shatters. To the young wife that is what her comatose husband becomes, more a relief from her loneliness, despair and feelings. Penniless, frightened of the rebel soldiers and their guns and tanks, she begins to shed her fears and anger to the husband she is trying to protect. Every time she leaves her husband she dons her burqa as the dutiful Muslim woman she is. Her secrets reveal a life lacking in love and understanding of her own femininity, sexuality and needs. Her secrets pour from her. The truth with which she has finally faced them come only with a special courage. No spoiler alert but the ending will surprise you.

Pros: The Patience Stone, which has won the Prix Goncourt (France’s top literary award) will give a glimpse into a random life of how women are relegated to live in third word countries.

Cons: The entire movie is (almost) a monologue. Beautiful Goldshifteh Farahani (don’t ask me to pronounce it) carries the movie. While I like slow-moving movies, this one is exceeding slow. You will have to bring your own Patience Stone with you to endure.★★★


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