Zanān bedun-e mardān or Women Without Men is Shirin Neshat’s indipendent film based on realist novel by Shahnush Parsipur. The story chronicles the intertwinning lives of 4 iranian women during the summer of 1953. A catalysmic moment in Iranian history when American led, British hacked coup d’etat brought down the democratically elected prime minister, Mohammad Mussadegh and reinstalled the Shah to power V
The women are Munes who wants to be a political activist. She interests with political and social issues. Faezeh is a conservative muslim and wants to have a good marriage; Zarin Kolah is a prostitute with sad story background and she is dreaming of a better future, and Farok-Lagha is a wife from most famous general in Iran and wealthy woman determined to become an influential figure on the political scene.
They meet in the garden from a house at sub-urban of Tehran. A garden where they find independence, solace and companionship. Garden is a metaphor from a freedom.
The story not only about democratic revolution, more than that Neshat tells Iranian society, gender, women abused and middle east culture. Its political yet art movie, we can see metaphors here and there. Beside that, Zanan-e bedun-e mardan made a visually stunning, beautiful shot and bird eye of Iran, great cinematography! Its because Neshat is a visual artist turns to director.
Neshat becerita tentang kecantikan dalam keburukrupaan, keteraturan di antara kesemerawutan dan kesunyian di tengah keramaian.