Poets of Life

Together We Stand Not Defeated

Director: Shirin Barghnavard

Documentary | 73 Mins


A poetic portrayal of the life of Shirin Parsi - rice farmer, environmentalist, and social activist.


Shirin Parsi is a rice farmer, but not an ordinary one. After receiving a BA in French literature from the University of Paris, she returned to Iran and decided not to live in the megapolis capital, Tehran. Her husband had inherited land in Shanderman, a village near the Caspian Sea, so they moved there and took up rice farming.

The Parsi family - including their two sons, who have stayed to farm with their parents - has instituted innovations in rice production. They promote sustainable farming and refrain from using chemical pesticides and fertilizers. In a region where more and more farmers are selling their farms at very cheap prices to developers, the Parsis produce 100% organic rice.

Shirin and her family have chosen an exemplary lifestyle which is rich in indigenous values. In addition to rice farming, she spends time as a social activist and volunteers with several local NGOs. She is especially active in women’s groups where she focuses on raising awareness.

This film follows Shirin preparing the rice paddies until the rice harvest, as well as showing her social activities, as she attempts to bring about social and environmental change.

Film Trailer


Writer, Director & Editor: Shirin Barghnavard / Cinematographer: Mohammad Reza Jahanpanah / Composer: Peyman Yazdanian / Sound Designer: Amir Hosein Ghassemi / Sound Recordists: Vahid Razavian, Meysam Hasanloo, Hassan Shabankareh / Unit Production Manager: Abed Nicpoo / Color Grading: Hamidreza Fatourehchian, Sindokht Rahimian / Still Photographers: Abbas Kowsari, Peyman Hooshmandzadeh / Graphic Designer: Hamed Jaberha / Project Advisors: Mahmoud Nazzari, Hossein Akbari / Research Management Team (EDF): Firouzeh Saber, Zahra Emrani / Researchers: Shirin Barghnavard, Z. Emrani

With presence by: Shirin Parsi and Mohammad Reza Marzban, Soroush Marzban, Ahmad Marzban, Brigitte Colette

Production Sponsors: Mark Amin, Aliasghar Hajibaba, Tabarestan Steel Foundry, Iran vice Presidency of Women and Family Affairs, Mahmoud Nazzari, Dozhpad, Shila Fastfood / Distribution Sponsor: Saman Bank

Artistic Consultant: Rakhshan Banietemad

Producer: Mojtaba Mirtahmasb

A Product of KARA Film Studio


Technical Info

  • Shaerane Zendegi
  • 73 min., English Subtitle, HD, Color, Iran, 2017
  • Persian, French, Taleshi
  • 16:9 or 1:1.85
  • Stereo
  • DCP / Blu-Ray / DVD / H.264 File



  • 6th Iranian Film Festival, Paris, France, 6-12 Jun 2018
  • 5th Iranian Film Festival Cologne, 17-21 May 2018
  • 21st Flying Broom Women Film Festival, 10 – 17 May 2018
  • 15th Image Of The Year Festival, Tehran, Iran, 20th February – 12th March 2018
  • 2nd Termeh Iranian Art & Culture Festival, Munich, Germany, 28th February- 5th March 2018
  • 20th annual One World International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival, Prague, Czech Republic, 5th – 14th March, 2018
  • 14th IAWRT Asian Women’s Film Festival, New Delhi, India, 5th – 7th March 2018
  • 7th Iranian Film Festival Edinburg, Scotland, 17th February – 1st March 2018
  • The Docs For Sale sector of the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA), Netherlands, 15th-26th November 2017
  • 8th London Iranian Film Festival, London, United Kingdom, 27th October-1st November 2017
  • 1st International Film Festival of Women, Koblenz, Germany from 27th-31st October 2017
  • Panorama section of 4th Bozcaada International Festival of Ecological Documentary, Turkey,  11th-15th October 2017
  • 16th Innsbruck Nature Film Festival, Austria, 10th-13th October 2017
  • lecture series JENE TAGE/THOSE DAYS in Vienna, Austria,  5th-7th October 2017
  • 6th Iran International Green Film Festival, Tehran, Iran, September 9-15, 2017
  • 14th Green Film Festival, Seoul, South Korea, May 18-24, 2017
  • 35th Fajr International Film Festival, Tehran, Iran, April 21-28, 2017

Special Screening

  •  Sina Cultural Complex, Montreal, Canada, March 14, 2019

  • Sepehr Cultural Foundation, Amphitheatre of Birjand's "Payaam-e-Noor" University, Birjand, South Khorasan Province, February 3, 2019

  • Sepehr Cultural Foundation, The cultural complex of Ghaen, Ghaen, South Khorasan Province, February 2, 2019

  • Review Conference of "Karestan Documentary Movies", London SOAS University, London, Great Britain, November 24, 2018


  • The 50th DocuNight Program, The USA, Canada, October 2018

  • Persian Cultural Center, San Diego, USA, 29th April 2018

  • Celebration of Women’s Day, Islamic Azad University, Science and Research Branch, Tehran, Iran, 5 March 2018
  • Film University Babelsberg KONRAD WOLF, Potsdam, Germany, December, 13, 2017
  •  Iran Newspaper, Tehran, July 1, 2017
  • 10th International Documentary Film Festival , Cinema Verite, (Special Section of KARESTAN) Tehran, Iran, December, 4 -11, 2016

Director's Note

Shirin Parsi is hard-working and resolute. Her dedicated spirit makes her passionate about life in all of its aspects. She appreciates life, and strongly believes that human beings can play a positive role in the universe. That is why she has chosen such a distinct lifestyle for herself; a lifestyle that has made her a fascinating and influential character. Now, during an era when societal and economic uncertainty has led to widespread dissatisfaction and despair, she revives lost hope in humanity by looking at life from an insightful and unique point of view.