Pruning Season

  • 8 10
  • 2018
  • 74min
Pruning Season
  • Original Title: The Winning Season (2009)

Ghassem Takdehgham believes that he has invented the cure for cancer, an herbal medicine that he has been preparing for several years. To demonstrate the effectiveness of its creation and commercialize it worldwide, Takdehgham will have to face a big obstacle: his own fear.

Pruning Season

OFFICIAL SELECTIONS: Cambridge Film Festival/Cinema Verite Iran/ Batumi International Art-house Film Festival/ 

Pruning Season, An Iranian man behind the cure for cancer

Allergies, diabetes, cancer, Ghassem Takdehgam claims he can cure almost everything. And his growing group of patients seems to verify the hypothesis of this Iranian man who has given much of his life to develop the artisanal technique to process a plant with important healing powers. Not satisfied with having a prosperous family business with his medicines, Takdehgam alludes to his solidarity to take his creation to the consumers of the entire world with the only condition that his authorship be justly recognized.

But the lack of confidence in the scientific and professional medical institutes that he consults for that purpose represents the biggest obstacle to his aspirations. It is here where the film camera of Iranian director Loqhman Khaledi becomes a key object in the quest of our inventor, who uses the filming of a documentary about himself to document the entire verification process of his medicine as a kind of protective shield in case one of the parties involved wants to cheat him.

The source of Takdehgam's fear is revealed in an emotional moment in the second half of the film, but his obsession to control the autonomy and the safeguard of him and his family only intensifies throughout the documentary. Pruning Season is engaging from the beginning but it is not another documentary about a curious case. Its director takes the time to delve into the disturbed soul of Takdehgam and at the same time he manages to maneuver on other issues that gravitate around the drama, such as the legitimating function of the video, the coldness of the pharmaceutical industry and the fear of humanity that its works be forgotten.

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