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The Color of Paradise: A Critical Analysis

             The Color of Paradise, directed by Majid Majidi in 1998, displays a young blind child's experiences with God, his family, and society as a whole. Majidi succeeds in realistically and reasonably portraying the importance of cultural principles, values, practices, and social structures of the Middle East and, even more specifically, Iran. Throughout the film, creative and innovative cinematography and audio aids Majidi in portraying Middle Eastern and Iranian cultural values. These values include, but are not limited to, family structure and the importance and definitive existence of religious relationships.
             The family is structured in patriarchal form, as discussed in lecture and several discussion sections. According to Dr. Newhall, patriarchy is a universal system of social organization in which males are given the advantage of power, status, economic, and political control. Authority is distributed vertically, based on sex and age. The greatest quantity of authority is given to the eldest male in the family. In The Color of Paradise, the father has the largest amount of authority. The cinematography of the film illustrates this family value marvelously. When the father is observed in the movie, many times the camera is placed below him, thus making him seem taller and more authoritative. Yet when the grandmother and blind child Mohammed are viewed, it is often from above, making them seem smaller and possessing less authority and power. Therefore, the patriarchal view is illustrated through the thoughtful and creative use of camera angles.
             Nature is also exemplified in the movie both audibly and through the eye of the camera. Nature and its relationship with religion were discussed countless times throughout the course of the semester. Nature has very close ties to God. In the Qur'án, paradise, or heaven, is described in terms of nature extensively, if not exclusively, "And as for those who kept the faith and worked justice "for them are gardens with rivers flowing underground.

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