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Salam Cinema : A tribute to movies

An old man with broken dreams, a 16 year old girl with dreams in her eyes but veil over her delicate face, a young man aspiring to being transformed from a nobody to a star – there is an actor in each of us that is always raring to come out . And it is that actor Mohsen Makhmalbaf wanted to capture in Salam Cinema and present it to the world . He shoots two birds with one stone in this one – provide a stunning salute to the spirit of cinema on its centennial anniversary , and gives the very audience who adore cinema a shot at stardom.

If cinema reflects on life, then there is room for everyone.

Mohsen Makhmalbaf

Salam Cinema or Hello Cinema is a Persian film , directed and written by Mohsen Makhmalbaf . The film is about an open casting happening in Tehran , which turned into a cruel and unapologetic thirst to find what cinema means to different people . The movie shot in the style of documentary mixed in with fiction is a perfect tribute to cinema and film making in general , along the lines of masterpieces that defined cinema as a whole . It is meticulously edited piece of work having several open discussions regarding the world of cinema . Few of them are as follows :

  • How a person’s looks shapes his/her career ?
  • Is it possible to be both an artist and a humane person? 
  • How cinema is business of selling emotions.

The movie also showcases the different facets of life such as love in the form of a woman who wanted to act in film to reach out to her lover who has left Iran and a veteran telling how hard work is not the only factor in making you successful .

Director at one instance announces , “You are both the subject and the actors in the film” , and film portrays that beautifully.

The director while making actors pretend as if grenade is thrown at them to making them cry or laugh on demand , acts like a god but finds a way to have democracy within its subjects (actor in this case). Anyone who are in love with the art of filmmaking or acting , will find meaning in the open faced discussions presented in the movie and somewhere along the line you maybe surprised by the answers that are presented.

Mohsen Makhmalbaf’s Salam Cinema is a must watch film that doesn’t conform to any of the rules or mould of cinema presented to us till now . It wants to see if it can become a mould itself . It is sad to say that even after 25 years of its release , the style of filmmaking done by Salam Cinema is seldom replicated .

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