In light of cultural and familial obligations, to what lengths will someone go for the person they love? The characters in Apricot Groves wrestle with their identities against a backdrop of religious and societal oppression. Aram, an Iranian-Armenian youth who immigrated to the US as a young child, returns to Armenia for the first time to ask for the hand in marriage of an Armenian girlfriend Aram met in the US. Together, Aram and his older brother, Vartan, must shoulder all the details for the traditional ritual themselves, because they have no surviving male relatives.
Aram discovers many cultural, religious, and national differences on the one-day trip, but harder obstacles lie ahead. Yet, there are more stops and rituals for the two brothers as they hit the road towards the Iranian border, and the film skillfully layers subtle hints among their words, looks, and deeds. With a striking, openhearted perspective, Apricot Groves proves that, when it comes to love, there are no borders. A beautiful story of identity, family, faith, brotherhood, and love, this debut feature was written and directed by Tehran-based Pouria Heidary Oureh.
In Armenian and Persian with English subtitles
Saturday, August 12
Wednesday, August 16