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Monday, June 22, 2009

The Stoning of Soraya M. – Part Two

At its heart, this movie is a human drama filled with tension, peril and hope – but it is also a true story that I felt strongly had to be told, a story the whole world needs to know.”– Director Cyrus Nowrasteh

There could be no better time than this Friday for this film’s release. At this moment, the women of Iran are at the forefront of the revolt against Iran’s unjust elections. And The Stoning of Soraya M. illustrates clearly what the people of Iran have been terrorized with and how powerful is the bravery of just one person telling the truth.

According to the film’s producers, the film’s subject “is incendiary: the thousands of women who are hounded, conspired against and murdered in cold blood around the world for so-called and often trumped-up ’crimes of dishonor,’ such as adultery or premarital sex. But the film’s treatment is universal, wrapped in a classic, gripping drama of one woman’s danger-fraught quest to bring the conniving evildoers in her remote village, who think they are acting with impunity, to global disgrace.”

The production notes continue: “From the beginning, Cyrus and Betsy made the decision to focus the tale’s suspense around Zahra, the savvy, outraged village woman who attempts to protect Soraya and ultimately tells her story in the hopes of saving others. Her quest for truth and justice amidst lies, betrayal and fraud became the driving force of the story. Meanwhile, Soraya and her accusers were etched as the two opposite poles of innocence and corruption between which each of the villagers must make a choice.”

To me, this message transcends the situation in Iran and other Islamic countries and should cause all of us to be vigilant about justice in our own backyards. As director Cyrus Nowrasteh said, “At its core this is a story that is very relatable, because it is about a conflict between a man and a woman and you connect to the characters in an emotional way as husband and wife.” Like the Apostle John, we need to examine ourselves and continue to look for the truth. We have huge problems with marital strife and abuse and injustice in our country. 1 John 1:8 (NKJV) “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” If we look at injustice in Iran and judge it without scrutinizing ourselves, we are hypocrites.

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