3 February 2017

We do not oppose cinema; We oppose vice: Imam Khomeini

TEHRAN (AIPFF) - It is an assessment of the leader's views, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, on art and cinema to which he referred to during his first speech on the first day of his arrival in the country on 1st February.

TEHRAN (AIPFF) – February 1 is marked as the anniversary of the arrival of late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the founder of the 1979 Islamic Revolution, in the country after 14 years of exile. The following is an assessment of the leader’s views on art and cinema to which he referred to during his first speech on the first day of his arrival.

Prior to the revolution, the Iranian cinema was deeply clouted by western cinema, especially the European cinema where off-color films were in vogue, leading to dissemination of unethical values and vice in the Iranian society that had nothing to do with the Iranian and Islamic identity of the Iranian people and were only made for entertaining the viewers.

Reacting to the prevalent cinematic norms in the country at that time, Imam Khomeini said: “This guy (Reza Shah), through one of his servants, had established these centers of prostitution; the TV is the nest of prostitution, most of the radio programs are corrupt; the centers they opened are all prostitution hubs; they have all joined hands. There are more pubs in Tehran than bookstores. And regarding the number of brothels, the sky’s the limit.”

While until then art and cinema were intertwined with corruption and prostitution and cultural dependence, Imam Khomeini separated them, saying:

“Why is our cinema such a center for prostitution? We are not against cinema; what we oppose is prostitution centers. We are not against the radio. We oppose vice. We are not against television; we are against anything that plays into the hands of aliens to keep our youth behind and waste our human forces.”

He further outlined cinema’s mission in the future of the Islamic Revolution, putting the bases of modern Iranian cinema as: “Cinema is a manifestation of civilization that should serve the people and be used for bringing them up. You know that these [films] have corrupted our youths.”

Now, after three decades since the victory of the Islamic Revolution, Iran’s cinema has been set free of cultural dependency to the West and the East and has been introduced as an independent cinema in the world, but it is still far from the ideals of the revolution. The current leader of the Islamic Revolution has sketched a brighter future for the Iranian cinema by emphasis on ethics and cultural as well as political independence and believes that the key to the country’s progress is in the hands of artists and moviemakers.

Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei underlined the role of cinema in development of the country in a meeting he had with Iranian directors a few years ago. Here you can watch the first that is being published for the first time.



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