The Keeper

Rated NR 2005

A young Iranian-American named Kamran (Adam Echahly), a direct descendant of the famous poet and astronomer Omar Khayyam, learns that his cancer-stricken older brother is the designated "keeper" of the family history, and takes it upon himself to learn the stories and continue the tradition. But when his brother dies, the journey to find out how the story ends takes him to England and Iran (he couldn't have just used the internet?). Meanwhile, we also see the story of Khayyam (Bruno Lastra) as imagined by the youngster, whose conception of the tale is decidedly low-budget. Amusingly, almost none of the ancient Persians are actually from the region: Lastra is Spanish, and he's joined by Irish-Rwandan actor Christopher Simpson, Brazilian-French Marie Espinosa, Croatian Rade Serbedzija, and German Moritz Bleibtreu. These latter two provide the strongest performances. The present-day stuff is dull, and the story of Khayyam could use a more skilled director -- rookie Kayvan Mashayekh seems in over his head.

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