VISAFF 2022 November 9 - November 13, 2022

VISAFF 2022 Submissions Closed

De Saro Khaar (City of Men)

De Saro Khaar (City of Men)

Two naive, young girls attempt to flee a house controlled by omnipotent patriarchy.


Two naive, young girls attempt to flee a house controlled by omnipotent patriarchy.

Duration: 20 mins

Hira Yousafzai

About Hira Yousafzai

I was born and raised in Peshawar, Pakistan; In an orthodox Pashtun family. I am the 7th of 8 siblings. In my family, becoming a filmmaker is not only rare, but ‘dishonorable’ & ‘disgraceful’ for women, and ‘honor’ conventionally rests on the shoulders of a woman; without which, the framework of Pashtunwali would crush.
For most of my life, my Parents and family members forced me to apply for every Medical School possible. I made sure I wasn’t selected because I had to somehow carve my way out
towards film. However, It was only later that I realized that somethings In my culture that women cannot even envisage can actually be achieved. Now, when I look back at it, I find it
enormously eerie and bizarre. How on earth could a girl like me from one of the most conservative cultures in the world dare make a film? Or dare step into a territory that is risky and able to tarnish the reputation of the Pashtun community as a whole? Well, I guess someone had to take that sword and fight! And to this date, I cannot believe I was able to do that. My struggle continues but I am still shook and find myself extremely
privileged. There are certainly women like me, with dreams like mine, who are confined within four walls; with nowhere to go, and nowhere to be but their dreams would take them as far as they can go.
I realize everyday of my life, that if there is something that I have truly wanted to do, or become, is a filmmaker who represents the female spirit, and tell stories that are never told before or because of the underrepresentation that we have endured from thebeginning of time.
I want to keep making those films that people are truly unaware of. My film: City of Men, which is a story of 2 Pashtun women maneuvering in the house of men, is a truth that might shock people, but it is the reality that is often veiled by suppressed voices and if there is anything that I wish to achieve in my life, it is to tell these stories that in many ways spring from reality of all these girls who dare to dream! I feel privileged to have expressed that ‘Pashtun female gaze’ through it.
For Pashtun Women, especially those that don’t have privilege, life is never easy. So we Dream On and never stop because Dreams have no boundaries and cannot be confined
within any walls.
Today, I am as mad about films as I was as a kid and I hope to stay mad about them forever!

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