TIFF 53 COVERAGE: TABOOR BY VAHID VAKILIFAR (ENG)
for desistfilm: Mónica Delgado
Everything starts in a room with metallic wallpaper, a claustrophobic den, a square uterus where the protagonist is “born”, an almost naked man who dresses himself with the same material of the walls. He goes out of his way to keep his daily duties, various small jobs as well as his work as a fumigator in different spaces and under the orders of people with extravagant habits. In Vahid Vakilifar’s Taboor (Irán 2012), through long and fixated shots we’re not only witnesses of the bizarre habits of the fumigator (being the target of boring millionaires who shoot blanks at him, fumigating obsolete factories by dawn or climbing on mechanical rides that simulate journeys through tunnels as veridical as the ones he visits every night) but we also discover a nightly Tehran filled with hidden spaces, stairs, hallways, tunnels, highways and mansions.
Vahid Vakilifar centres the whole of his film on the protagonist, a lonely middle-aged man who begins to leave his room towards a search of light, as simple as the dawn. A strange Tehran opens under splendid night photography and in a sci-fi style that escapes the naturalistic canon of films from the same country.
In Taboor the film is also constructed under the accumulation of modal spaces that are almost logical: Closed rooms precede tunnels, parking lots to hallways, elevators to spiral staircases, mansions to empty spaces; and so Vahid Vakilifar achieves a different film, but maybe the thing about that unusual touch is that one becomes aware of the formula, the reminiscence of a nightmarish machinery as a dry paradox that finally doesn’t add up.