16 Jul I am Zal, by Hooman Naderi
There are unique qualities to each of us. Some have freckles, some have really bright eyes. Whatever it is, these qualities help us to be recognizable from a crowd. The problem is that some attributes are more desired than others, leaving the rare ones to stand out even more.
We can see how appearances can affect others behavior from this short film, “I am Zal.” The man from the title, Zal, comes from Iranian mythology about a legendary hero with albinism. While the film is not about Zal, but rather a young boy named Daniel, we do see how moments of Daniel’s life are mirrored with the story from the legend.
Just as Zal was rejected by his father, Daniel is rejected by his mother. Daniel also has his teachers to help nurture him whereas Zal had a mythical bird. Now, many may think that they cannot relate to Daniel’s story simply because they may not be albino, but that is not true. Everyone at one point in their lives have been treated differently for how they looked.
The main part of the story is that everyone is worthy.
By Chynna, 2020 American INSIGHT Intern, Temple University, 2021