The story is told in a simple and straightforward narrative that reflects the style of the graphic novel perfectly and allows us to fully empathise with Satrapi's emotional responses to the situations she finds herself in. The whole story is intensely political on a variety of levels but is made more real and relevant as we view the world through the eyes of Satrapi initially as a young girl growing into a young woman. Although set in Iran, the film uses the lack of colour and generic cityscape backgrounds to illustrate how easily this situation could happen in any country.
If the story is the central feature of the film, the simple but beautiful animation comes a close second. It's a minimalist approach that really works in conveying the atmosphere of fear in an everyday community with the odd splash of colour jolting us back into the present. The silhouetted scenes of the Revolution and state police are particularly striking and scary, with the dreamy suicide scenes equally moving and unnerving.
A great film with a unique perspective, thought provoking messages and stunning artwork.
If you like this you could also try:
Belleville Rendez-Vous, The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, The Lives of Others.