Keeper: The Legend of Omar Khayyam, The

MPAA Rating: PG

Entertainment: +2 1/2

Content: +2

From his brother (Puya Behinaein) and grandfather (Darius Irannejat), 12-year-old Kamran (Adam Echahly) learned the value of his heritage and the ancient stories that compose it. So when he is called upon to be The Keeper of those stories, he is eager to learn them well. Kamran listens carefully to the epic tale of his ancestor, Omar Khayyam (Bruno Lastra), and he imagines the 11th century events that made Omar great. From humble beginnings, Omar Khayyam became a famous Persian poet, mathematician and astronomer, who sat at the feet of the sultan as a trusted advisor. But Omar also lived a life of conflict over love and faith with his childhood friend, Hassan Sabbah (Christopher Simpson). Omar and Hassan both loved a slave girl named Darya (Marie Espinosa), and while Omar treasured reason above faith, Hassan believed his friend to be a heretic and betrayer of Persia. Also starring Vanessa Redgrave.

The Keeper, the first film from attorney-turned-writer/director Kayvan Mashayekh, celebrates the oral traditions of Mashayekhs homeland and the value of those traditions today. For Kamran and his family, Omars story is a meaningful heritage. Omar exemplifies love, truthfulness and knowledge, among other virtues, and Kamran learns from Omars life. Additionally, Kamrans journey of discovery helps to strengthen his family. Christian audiences should note the portrayal of religious truth in the film. The enlightened and heroic Omar is the voice of religious relativism, valuing reason above faith and claiming, God doesnt care how you believe in him as long as you first believe in yourself. In contrast, Hassan is a religious fundamentalist who is portrayed as a villainous enemy of reason, while Christians are viewed only as violent crusaders. Overall, Preview recommends this thought-provoking and family-friendly film.

Preview Reviewer: Shaun Daugherty
Guide Company Films & Arrival Pictures

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: None

Obscene Language: None

Profanity: Once moderate (by G 1)

Violence: Several times mild (young friends shown sparring with each other a few times); moderate (attempted assassination of leaders, men attack others with swords and knives, men shot to death with arrows, sword fighting, image of battlefield with many impaled dead bodies)

Sex: Few times mild (one sensual scene with hints of nudity and silhouettes of unmarried man and woman embracing and kissing with sex implied)

Nudity: Few times mild (one scene shows a man without his shirt and a womans bare upper back, upper bodies shown in silhouette without showing breasts)

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Few times mild (kissing and embracing between unmarried man and woman); moderate (sultan has a woman dance before a favored guest and offers to let him have her)

Drugs: Few times mild (use and celebration of wine by a character)

Other: Many appropriate references to God and faith in an Islamic context, portrayal of terminal illness, use of elements of Persian history, religious fundamentalism contrasted with religion governed by reason and science, references to Islam and faith in the God of Islam, discussion of the Crusades from a Muslim perspective with Christians and the soldiers of Christ portrayed as the enemies, discussion of oral tradition and its value for people in the world today, portrayal of a boy who is interested in his heritage

Running Time: 95 minutes
Intended Audience: Youths and adults

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