The Stoning of Soraya M. is based on a true event which took place nearly three decades ago in Modern Iran. A country still raged under war, where women have little or no rights at all – such untold stories continue to haunt the world.
The Film is based on Soraya (Mozhan Marno) a mother of four , accused of committing adultery by her husband (Navid Negahban)and stoned to death in public. Falsely accused by her husband (because he wants to marry a younger woman) and her refusal to divorce him leads to her gory death.
When the Mayor (David Diaan) asks Soraya to prove her innocence saying: “When a man accuses his wife, she must prove her innocence. That is the law. On the other hand, if a wife accuses her husband, she must prove his guilt“. You realize at that particular moment she is cornered.Either way, a woman is trapped!
Though the plot is based around Soraya – her aunt, portrayed powerfully, by Shohreh Aghdashloo is undoubtedly the protagonist of the story. She is at once the protective mother, the brash and outspoken fighter,the fearless matriarch of that little village in Iran hidden away from the rest of the world. Despite all the qualities she possesses she cannot stop the stoning of her niece.What she declared –” I will tell the truth. I’ll tell everyone. I’ll tell the world” – she lived up to it. If not for her, the world would probably not be aware of such a heinous crime against women.
The stoning is painful to view. The brutality of the mob of men makes you want to shred them to pieces and the helplessness of the women screams at you. What is the future of women in such places where your own Father is ashamed of a crime you have not committed, where your own sons do not falter to make you a spectacle in public and where your husband plots against you for his own little desire?
The movie is a brave effort to remove the veil off of such crimes.