You could send yourself crazy trying to determine what A Dragon Arrives! is actually all about; what opens as a playfully elusive detective noir turns into something else entirely as fact and fiction begin to blur. Mani Haghighi interweaves various narratives and timelines to blend history, allegory, and magical realism into a spellbinding film that may or may not be about the current state of Iran.
A Dragon Arrives! is aided by some truly spectacular cinematography and a thunderous score; this enigmatic mystery will leave some viewers baffled, but demands attention for those who like their films to challenge them.
Although outwardly difficult, A Dragon Arrives! is a rather magnificent and surprisingly enjoyable film that announces Haghighi as a major talent.
CAST: Amir Jadidi, Homayoun Ghanizadeh, Ehsan Goudarzi, Kiana Tajammol
DIRECTOR: Mani Haghighi
WRITER: Mani Haghighi
SYNOPSIS: Things get weird for a detective, a geologist, and a sound engineer investigating a political prisoner who has hung himself in an abandoned ship in the middle of the Iranian desert.
A Dragon Arrives! was reviewed as part of One Room With A View’s coverage of the 66th Berlinale Film Festival, which runs 11-21 February 2016.