Program Detail

Love Crimes of Kabul

Tanaz Eshaghian / USA / 2011 / 71 min / Dari, Pashto with English subtitles / Color / HDCAM* / San Francisco Premiere


In this intimate, immersive portrayal of Afghan society and its treatment of women, the Emmy-nominated director Tanaz Eshaghian goes where few journalists have ever been: Kabul’s Badam Bagh Women’s Prison, and discovers there the heartbreaking stories of its “moral prisoners,” women incarcerated for premarital sex, running away from home, and adultery.

Eshaghian, the Iranian American filmmaker who showcased Iran’s policy of sex-change operations for homosexuals in her award-winning Be Like Others, here gains unprecedented access to the Afghan judicial system, and delivers a captivating view of the intricate dance between honor and shame. The cultural and political negotiations surrounding marriage in Afghan society play out through the stories of Sabereh, who was turned in by her own father after he caught her with her boyfriend; the unmarried and pregnant Kareema, who turned herself in to the authorities, and the divorcee Aleema, who ran away from a family that “speaks with swords” after she broke her curfew. The light-hearted yet absolute candor of these women is tinged by the anger, resentment, and proud sense of rebellion that is justifiably theirs.

-Shwetika Baijal

Co-presenter (3/14): Asian Prisoner Support Committee


  • Director: Tanaz Eshaghian
  • Executive Producer: Sheila Nevins
  • Producer: Christoph Jorg, Tanaz Eshaghian
  • Cinematographer: Kat Patterson
  • Editor: Jay Freund


March 9, 2012 9:00 pm
Sundance Kabuki Cinemas
Tickets not currently on sale

March 14, 2012 9:00 pm
Pacific Film Archive Theater
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March 17, 2012 10:00 pm
Camera 3 Cinemas
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