In her hands


At 26, Zarifa Ghafari is Afghanistan’s youngest mayor. She governs a city that is conservative even by Afghan standards. Most people there believe women shouldn’t leave the house, let alone hold positions of power. Since the day Zarifa took office, she has faced fierce opposition from a population ensnared between a Western-supported government they have lost all faith in and the brutal Taliban who threaten to take back the region. The Taliban have Zarifa in their sights and make several attempts on her life.


Filmed across two turbulent years, ZARIFA (w/t) tells the story of Ghafari’s fight for survival against the backdrop of her country’s accelerated unravelling. As Western forces announce their retreat, and the Taliban start their sweep back to power, Zarifa must make the most difficult decision of her life – one that is echoed across the country. The film is a story of betrayal, murder and redemption, and it is an intimate portrait of a young woman fighting for the hopes and dreams of her generation.


Director: Tamana Ayazi, Marcel Mettelsiefen
Producers: Juan Camilo Cruz, Jonathan Shaerf
Cinematographer: Marcel Mettelsiefen, Jordan Bryon
Editor: Stephen Ellis, Ines Boffi, Philipp Gromov
Music: Michael Kadelbach
Executive Producers: Hillary Clinton, Chelsea Clinton, Howard Owens, Ben Silverman, Siobhan Sinnerton, Marcel Mettelsiefen, Stephen Ellis, Tamara Ayazi.
Production Companies: Moondogs, Propagate, Hidden Light
Year: 2022
Duration: 93 min
Country: United States of America/Afghanistan


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