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Meyhane, a Home for My Grandfather



Musa AgacikMaryam AshtariMehmet Said AydinAydin BoysanGuzin DegismezAmir FekriSuzan KardesErkan OgurMehdi ShabaniMetin SolmazVefa Zat


Mehdi Shabani



Directed by Iranian filmmaker Mehdi Shabani, Meyhane: A Home for My Grandfather cuts across the realms of literature, Sufism and savoir-vivre as well as the socio-cultural and historical layers of Istanbul to shed light on one of the most exciting locus of culture in the Eastern world. The Meyhane (May-HAH-nay) is simply the name given to the traditional taverns historically found in Iran, Turkey and the Arab countries. The name comes from the Farsi words for "wine" (mey) and "house" (hane). Meyhanes are where people stop to imbibe wine or Raki eating exquisitely prepared "meze" (tapas) and to fraternize. However, the meyhanes have signified, for centuries, a geography of meaning much vaster than being simple places to drink. From Omar Khayyam to Sufis, who rendered the meyhane and the wine as metaphors for spiritual ascension, the meyhane have served the philosophers of the soul and symbolized a place for rest, pondering the deeper waters of life. From Iran to its hinterland, from Anatolia to Greece, meyhanes have always been linked to a deeper philosophy of life. Inspired by the director's grandfather's devotion to the culture, to such a degree that he forsook his own wedding ceremony to indulge in a night at the meyhane, Meyhane: Dedemin Can Evi brings to screen an intimate exploration of the currently commercialized culture of meyhanes in Istanbul as well as the profound philosophy and life-knowledge that is associated with them with stories and commentaries from a long list of names known for their expertise in and love for the culture.