22.04. ‐ 27.04.2025
My Favourite Cake

My Favourite Cake (Keyke Mahboobe Man)

Maryam Moghaddam, Behtash Sanaeeha

She doesn't seem like a rebel at all - the 70-year-old widow Mahin lives a modest life in Tehran and loves meeting her friends for dinner. She longingly remembers her youth, when women didn't have to fear the repressive violence of the Shiite moral police every second. So she decides to go looking for a romantic adventure again. After a fleeting encounter with the taxi driver Faramarz, she invites him to her home and a love affair develops between the two over wine and dancing. As innocent and tender as it may sound, this hopeful attitude is a clear criticism of the government and its oppressive tyranny. Because under a regime like the one in power in Iran, every act of love, every expression of freedom becomes an act of rebellion.

More information Lichter FilmfestLichter Filmfest

Direction Maryam Moghaddam, Behtash Sanaeeha
Country Iran, France, Sweden, Germany
Year 2024
Duration 97 min
Language Farsi with subtitles
Production Etienne de Ricaud, Peter Krupenin, Gholamreza Moosavi, Behtash
Cast Lili Farhadpour, Esmaeel Mehrabi
Camera Mohamad Hadadi
Script Maryam Moghaddam, Behtash Sanaeeha
Editing Ata Mehrad
Sound Hossein Ghoorchian, Reza Heidari

Berlinale 2024: Fipresci Price, Price of the ecumenical Jury

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About the directors

As a directing duo Tehran born Maryam Moghaddam and Behtash Sanaeeha from Shiraz have already made three films. Their first feature film, Ballad of the White Cow, was screened in competition for the Golden Bear at the Berlinale in 2023 and was shown at many film festivals around the world. The world premiere of her next film, My Favorite Cake, had to take place in Berlin this year without their presence, as the Iranian government banned the couple from leaving the country and had their passports confiscated after the production offices were violently but unsuccessfully searched for the film's hard drives.

Press reviews

„Moghaddam and Sanaeeha and the actors turn this set piece into a whirling dervish of elderly seduction, executed with crack comic timing, precise choreography for both the camera and the characters themselves, and one of the all-time great crash cuts. [...] We can only hope that all involved in this remarkable, heady achievement will have a chance to seize more days with further films.“ (Leslie Felperin, The Hollywood Reporter)

“Moghaddam and Sanaeeha were already filming when Jina Mahsa Amini, arrested by the moral police for allegedly violating the hijab law, was presumably violently killed and the biggest protests since the 1979 Islamic Revolution began in Iran. Mahin's story, which the directing duo dedicates to women, life and freedom, analogous to the movement that emerged after Amini's death, is particularly moving because of its political background and the numerous references to the omnipresent systematic misogyny. My Favorite Cake, the competition favorite of many Berlinale visitors, opens eyes and hearts - and resonates for a long time." (Stefanie Borowsky, Kino-Zeit)

„Watching these two elderly people indulge in their tiny, harmless but illegal pleasures is a delight. Nothing is airbrushed: Lily Farhadpour is a large woman, faintly absurd in her outmoded evening dresses, but it is entirely convincing when Faramarz tells her gallantly that her body is perfect. [...] Both actors seem lit from within, radiant with renewed life.“ (Stephanie Bunbury, Deadline)

The directors about the film

„Today, a film which we have spent three years of our lives making will be shown here, unfortunately, without our presence. We feel like parents who are forbidden from even looking at their newborn child… We are sad and we are tired but we are not alone.“ A message from Maryam Moghaddam und Behtash Sanaeeha, read at the Berlinale-Pressconference of the movie.


International Feature Film Program