The Wind Will Carry Us ( Bād mā rā khāhad bord) (1999)
Director: Abbas Kiarostami
While Kiarostami's film is not strictly a documentary, the slow observational pace of The Wind Will Carry Us draws the viewer into the world of a Kurdish village hardly touched by the modern world (a hurricaine lamp here, a motor bike there). A TV crew arrive hoping to document the mourning rituals of the village, only to find that the old woman has not yet died. One crew member, known as the 'Engineer,' finds himself beginning to notice the life that surrounds him as he performs this strange death watch.
I found this compelling and beautiful, not least the wide shots of the Iranian landscape, with its hills and valleys with its shimmering, undulating crops. The people of the village are engimatic, their faces bearing signs of the hardships of this life, yet the social codes are so clear to them that they don't find themselves lost like the Engineer.
Don't approach the film seeking thrills or 'entertainment': The Wind Will Carry Us is more meditative, asking us to contemplate life, death, the old, the new, poverty, possessions, love, friendship and nature. It is a natural companion for The Tree of Wooden Clogs, another film that takes the modern viewer into a world lived for centuries by their ancestors.