The Charmer


New Directors Competition | 2017 | 100 minutes

Stranger Says:

This film, which is perfect until its final 15 minutes, is about a youngish Iranian man in Copenhagen who is trying to fuck his way to Danish citizenship. He is good-looking. His eyes are large and intelligent. His body is not too fit and not too flabby—in other words, it’s just right. The women love him, and it seems finding a match should not be a problem. But he doesn’t have much time—he needs a woman to be fucked so blissfully that she cannot say no to being his wife right quick. And the one Danish woman who is fucked in such a way, who will do anything for him, turns out to be married. He does not have enough time for her to get divorced and legally attached to him. She loses him and her mind. Another woman loses her mind during his desperate mission. She is also young and Iranian, and has citizenship. She falls in love with him. It’s a match made in heaven. But he has a secret, which turns out to ruin the end of this otherwise brilliant film.

SIFF Says:

Handsome Iranian migrant Esmail is a man on a mission. He spends every night at the same upscale Copenhagen wine bar in pursuit of a woman who will provide him the means to stay in Denmark once his visa expires. With his one nice suit and his faulty Danish, he embarks on relationship after relationship, always aware that time is running out. But his mission becomes even more complicated the night he approaches a young blonde, only to be told off by Sara, her Iranian Danish friend who sees exactly what Esmail is up to. Perhaps surprisingly, this honesty forms the basis for a relationship of their own, one that only grows as Sara’s mother welcomes Esmail into their small family. Despite the pressure of navigating the social intricacies of Denmark’s Iranian community while trying to maintain the connection, via truncated Skype sessions, with his family back home, it seems like Esmail’s goal may at last be within reach. What he hasn’t take into account, however, are the vagaries of the human heart, neither those of the women he pursues, nor his own.

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Film Credits
Milad Alami
Ardalan Esmaili, Lars Brygmann, Morten Hee Andersen, Stine Fischer Christensen, Boie Kratfeldt
SIFF 2018