The Iran Job | Chicago Reader

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90 minutes · 2012

Till Schauder directed this 2012 documentary about Kevin Sheppard, an American basketball player who, failing to make it to the NBA, becomes a self-described "journeyman," playing basketball for brief stints in foreign countries. His latest contract sends him to Iran, where he’s primed to be the star player of a struggling team. Structurally, Schauder adheres to an arc typical of most sports comedies—Sheppard, the charismatic outsider, rallies his teammates to an exciting play-off run—but his true aim is to depict the social and cultural tension Sheppard experiences while he's in Iran. The film takes a distinctly American approach to Iranian matters of gender relations and religious extremism, shedding little light on subjects that are far more complicated than Schauder makes them out to be.

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