"Jiyan gives a human face to the massacre, which despite its magnitude drew only subdued attention from the
international community... Rosebiani's drama nonetheless provides moving, often poetic testimony to the tragedy
and to the will of the devastated people to heal and rebuild."
-David Rooney, Variety
"Jiyan is a somber and haunting, yet affectionate, charming, and celebratory portrait of human courage, community,
dignity, and resilience."
-Senses of Cinema - Strictly Cinema School (SFS)
"An accomplished and moving feature from writer-director Jano Rosebiani."
-Channel Four, London
"Jiyan is a beautiful film, as cherish-able as a late spring bloom."
-The Daily Telegraph
"Lyrical and poetic, enchanting and life-enhancing, a subtle interweaving of elements, a tapestry."
-Adrian Bailly, Pertier Media, Liverpool, UK
"An authentic, compassionate and valuable expression of witness, memory and shared humanity."
-Gareth Evans, 46th London Film Festival
"The film takes us to the center of the volcano, so to speak, with a film whose heart and soul are as big and beautiful as the eyes of its brightest star, Pisheng Berzinji, as the orphan Jiyan, 10... not to mention the whole assortment of delightful characters who populate this drama, some who'll make you smile, some who'll make you cry, and all who will make you care."
-John Dolen, South Florida Sun-Sentinel
"Filmed with a patient, lyrical humanism plainly inspired by such Iranian masters as Kiarostami and Panahi, Jiyan manages to
unflinchingly address the horrors man can inflict upon his fellows without surrendering to cynicism or despair."
-28th Seattle International Film Festival
"Rosebiani... manages to keep his storytelling spry, humorous and as uplifting as it is heartbreaking, while taking us through a
litany of the towns ills."
-Eric Moore, Philadelphia Festival of World Cinema
"Jiyan is a symbol for Kurdish survival - for the vulnerability of the nation but especially, for its optimism regarding life; the flowers of the protagonist contrast with her scarred face. Jano Rosebiani does not seek revenge, even if one senses his bitterness. He is equally interested in the insecurity the future holds as he is in the poetry and the vitality of the orphans. This dualism is the source of the film's poetic lyricism, of its opening and closing images."
-19th Jerusalem Film Festival
"Seeing a film like Jiyan reminds you why you want to be in film making in the first place. It has all the ingredients that make a
memorable and fantastic film. [Cinematographer] Koutaibas genuine eye for the beauty and hardship on the faces of the Kurdish people is very impressive indeed...Truly inspiring films like Jiyan should be cherished and talented filmmakers like Jano Rosebiani should be embraced."
-Jaab Mees, Talking Pictures, London
"This moving deeply compassionate story is a plea for us to take the Kurdish question, in all its aspects, seriously."
-14th Galway Film Fleadh, Ireland
- New Director's Showcase Special Jury Prize, Seattle International Film Festival 2002
- Costa Azul Award - Festroia, Troia International Film festivel, Setubal, Portugal, 2002.
- Honorable Mention - In The Spirit of Freedom Award - 19th Jerusalem Film Festival 2002
- Best Film - Rights to Have Rights Film Festival, Modena, Italy
- Nominated - Tiger Award, Rotterdam International Film Festival, 2002
Rotterdam (World Premiere) (Tiger Competition) Carlovy Vary Göteberg London Pusan (Asian premiere) Montreal (North American Premiere) Jerusalem (Special Jury Citation) Seattle (Special Jury Award) Method Fest, Burbank, CA Galway Fleadh, Ireland Fort Lauderdale, Florida Fukouka, Japan Setubal, Portugal (Dolphin Award) Rio de Janeiro Warsaw Philadelphia New Delhi Brugge, Belgium Turnhout, Belgium Rome HRW New York HRW Boston HRW Guam The Wales Prague, Czech Republic Singapore Modena, Italy (popular Jury Award) HRFF Barcelona Kurdish FF London Exile FF, Göteborg Med FF, Roma Orlando, Florida Asian FF, Vancouver Mideast FF, Tokyo Seoul Dahka, Bangladesh Liberty FF, West Hollywood Balafon FF, Bari, Italy Kurdish FF, Montreal Temecula, CA NYU Kurdish FF Film House Cinema, Edinburgh, Scotland
University of Minnesota, Minneapolis/St Paul - International House, Philladelphia - ETSU (East Tennessee State University)
Kurdo Galali - Diyai
Enwer Shekhani - Salar
Pisheng Berzinj - Jiyan
Derya Qadir - Tavga
Choman Hawrami - Sherko
Tara Ebdilrehman - Shilan
Shahla Hemed - Shireen
Rubar Ehmed - Jala
Niyaz Latif - Haji Hemed
Perwin Shazade - Kejal
Nasir Hesen - Mela Rostem
Shehram Namiq - Alan
Ghazi Ghefur - Tavga's Father
Omer Chawsheen - Man at Teahouse
Producer/Writer/Director/Editor: Jano Rosebiani
Director of Photography: Koutaiba Al Janabi
Sound Designer: Alain Pierre