A rich matriarch has died and the battle lines of inheritance are drawn between her disabled daughter and second husband (rumoured to dabble in witchcraft). As the paranoid, hothouse atmosphere builds – and the murky basement with its jars of acid is revealed – murder seems inevitable. Aslani’s chilling, decadent family thriller is told with unsettling control and restraint. The beautifully composed interiors inspired by classic Persian miniatures become the home to horror in a world where disembodied hands express as much as faces. Sabotaged, suppressed and banned, with its negatives lost for decades, Chess of the Wind almost disappeared from the face of world cinema. With this new restoration, our perception of Iranian film will never be the same again.

Robin Baker

Restored in 4K in 2020 by The Film Foundation’s World Cinema Project and Fondazione Cineteca di Bologna from the original 35mm camera and sound negatives at L’Image Retrouvée laboratory (Paris) in collaboration with Mohammad Reza Aslani and Gita Aslani Shahrestani.

Restoration funding provided by the George Lucas Family Foundation.

Sales The Film Foundation’s World Cinema Project