Forced Confessions

Maziar Bahari, England, 2012, color / black and white, HDcam, 58'
Synopsis

Few things are more humiliating than having to reel off someone else's lies. In 2009, millions of Iranians watched on TV as filmmaker Maziar Bahari, a guest of honor at IDFA 2007, was forced to make a false confession. He had supposedly been collaborating with the West and was accused of espionage. As a filmmaker and journalist working for Western broadcasting corporations, he was the perfect scapegoat for the regime. Many intellectuals, writers, philosophers and journalists had preceded Bahari since the Iranian Revolution in 1979. The director's own voice-over and interviews with fellow Iranians who have been through the same ordeal guide the viewer through the history of forced confessions in Iran. They are degrading tales of intelligent men who never thought they would have to make false confessions in public, but potentially fatal torture left them with few options. It has now been 30 years since the first false public confession. No Iranian believes any of them, but the ruling regime continues to use them. This inevitably leads to the question of what this self-deception says about Iranian society. Because, as philosopher Ramin Jahanbegloo asks himself about the investigators, "How did we create such monsters and criminals?"

Meet us at the Berlinale and EFM February 3, 2016 | The Berlinale is only days away, and IDFA staff are gearing up for the festival as well as the European Film Market. Once again, IDFA is a collaborating partner in the EFM's Meet the Docs programme.
Help crowdfund Inseparables January 26, 2016 | The inseparable friends Tashi and Tshering have one big dream: to become part of the first Bhutanese national women's soccer team. Inseparables portrays their their path to this goal. The film was previously supported by the IDFA Bertha Fund. Now, directors Dorottya Zurbó and Arun Bhattarai need your help to finish their film.
Attend IDFAcademy Summer School January 15, 2016 | Entry for the IDFAcademy Summer School 2016, which will take place July 4-9 in the heart of Amsterdam, is now open.

Twitter

IDFAindustry @IDFAindustry 4 hour ago
RT @EDNEDN: Meet the Festivals, today @ 11h w/ @idfa @visionsdureel @cphdox @MFDFJihlava @DocsBarcelona +more! #MeetTheDocs https://t.co/NF…
Open
IDFAindustry @IDFAindustry 2 days ago
In most countries the beginnings of football wasn't documented or has been forgotten. In Bhutan, it’s happening now. https://t.co/sdzF9s4L6n
Open
VPROOxfam Novibde VolkskrantBankGiro LoterijFonds 21VSBfondsBeijing Documentary Development Association