Juliette Binoche's Tears Heard for Jafar Panahi

Jafar Panahi was released on a $200,000 bail from Iranian authorities yesterday. Steven Spielberg, Juliette Binoche, and others petitioned for his release.

It is easy to read between the lines here. Personally, I am moved that Cannes and Juliette Binoche would offer so much support for Panahi. It makes me want to move to France. Who knows? I just might.

"The White Balloon" directed by Jafar Panahi

Kiorastami mentions in the Cannes Press Conference for Certified Copy that when one imprisons an artist for their art, they are also imprisoning the art itself. Here (above) is a portion of Jafar Panahi's The White Balloon - a film that continues to be an influence on my life and work.

(More on Panahi & Censorship in Iranian Cinema)

Jafar Panahi Begins Hunger Strike

Jafar Panahi, acclaimed Iranian filmmaker, has been imprisoned by the Iranian government for the past two months. Accused of creating an "anti-state-film" (as of yet unreleased) by authorities, he has been interrogated and kept from his family and lawyer for the past two months. In an effort to make known the injustice against him, Panahi has begun a hunger strike, which he says he will continue until he is released. Other filmmakers, such as Abbas Kiorastami, have spoken in support of Panahi without avail.

Panahi's most recent letter to his family and lawyer foretell brutal conditions and an unlikely release:

Tokyo, Japan #4

Our adventure in Tokyo continued with a visit to Tokyo Tower. I liked how they charged us $30 just to peer down on a city. I wouldn't say it was worth the price, but I do have the picture now.


(Wine barrels from France that were sent in recognition of the Emperor's Temple for peace between East and West.)

A day earlier, we got to visit a temple that was built as a remembrance between East and West by one of the emperors of Japan. Don't expect me to remember this sort of thing. We just stumbled upon a deluge of foreigners walking down a path near Rappongi. Sogee and I were in the middle of fighting over directions. I decided to keep walking down the path. She followed. I thought it was pretty funny that we were fighting near a temple that was constructed for peace.

Our bickering continued while we watched a wedding procession into the temple. That just made me laugh more.

Sohee asked for the camera to take the pics. I just watched in an angry, but not-so-angry way. Couples fighting during trips is such a funny thing. It means very little. It's like going to the bathroom or seeing a dish in a buffet you don't particularly care for. You could walk past without saying anything, but sometimes there is a satisfaction in making your discomfort known. "I am really sick of you," the truer voice in your head might say. "Walk somewhere else." Of course, that voice is very far from the truth of all things. There just isn't any perspective, so you can get caught up in the emotions of living. Then you remember that you are your own person and the ridiculousness of it all. "Why were we mad again? You didn't know the directions? One person said it was one way, while the other is convinced their sense of direction is oh-so-perfect.

A Japanese dog.

There were all sorts of characters out in Japan. It was definitely a country filled with a lot more freedom and individuality in comparison to South Korea. Here was one gal who was just chilling outside a department store. She wasn't selling anything as far as I could tell. She was just looking for a bit of attention, or maybe not. Maybe that was just how she rolled. Ultra-pink.

Hachiko is a dog that is famous for waiting for his owner everyday at a subway stop long after his owner had died. They made a movie of it with Richard Gere. I like dogs. I liked that story, so we took a picture with a statue in Shibuya.

Here is a Japanese chicken.

Here is me trying to win a stuffed animal.

Here is me winning.

Here is a superhero.

Here are two famous couples.

Here is a beautiful girl.

This is my favorite picture from Japan.

Past Simple 8

Work by:

Josh Atlas Erik Anderson Melissa R. Benham Dan Chelotti Alban Fischer Richard Froude Becca Jensen Patricia Lockwood Rebecca Loudon Ken Mikolowski Jesse Morse Eileen Myles Francis Raven Chris O’Rourke Jean Villepique Charlyne Yi