The Silhouettes

The Silhouettes

  • Available to stream online: Wed, Oct 14, 6:00pm to Fri, Oct 16, 6:00pm
  • Virtual Q&A: Fri, Oct 16, 6:00pm

Streaming of this film is only available to viewers in Canada. Virtual Q&A is available worldwide.

Afsaneh Salari / 2020 / Farsi with English subtitles / Iran / Philippines / 80 min / North American Premiere



In 1982, 1.5 million Afghan refugees fled the USSR’s invasion of Afghanistan. Leaving behind the war of their home, starting their new lives in Iran, The Silhouettes witnesses a family attempting to make sense of their new reality, which presents its own unique sets of challenges. Touching on the effects of war, trauma, displacement and isolation, we go on a journey with Taghi, one of the younger members of the family. Caught between the confining reality of his people’s place in Iranian society and his desire to return to his continually war-ravaged home in Afghanistan, Taghi begins to explore his future, navigating the familial responsibilities in this increasingly precarious situation. Trapped between his suffocating existence in Iran that is rife with discrimination and stigma, while having to face returning to his homeland, still in the midst of war. What future awaits him in each land?

Screening with

Stray Dogs Come Out at Night 
Hamza Bangash | 2019 | Pakistan | Punjabi with English subtitles | 11 minutes

Iqbal, a migrant sex worker, cannot come to terms with his illness.  Desperate for respite, he convinces his uncle to take a day trip to the beach. The Arabian Sea beckons.


ASL Interpreted, Open Captions, Active Listener

An Active Listener will be available Fri, Oct 16 from 6-8pm to support this program.
Your active listener for this program is Kat.
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Living through waves of political reform spurred by transnational interference undoubtedly challenges one’s sense of identity. The Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979 uprooted millions of Afghans who sought refuge elsewhere, including the family featured in The Silhouettes. How might this inherited cultural and geographical displacement be experienced by younger generations of Afghans in Iran or the Afghan diaspora? Is it possible to seek some semblance of resolution by returning to one’s homeland? These issues will be explored in the post-screening Q&A with director Afsaneh Salari. Moderated by Toronto-based filmmaker and programmer Aisha Jamal.