The film narrates the story of a nine year old young girl Marjane in Iran during the 1979 Islamic Revolution. Through the eyes of the little girl it shows how people’s hopes were dashed as the religious fundamentalists came to power, forced the veil on women and imprisoned people.
So, Marjane Satrapi has lived through some interesting shit. She grew up in Iran, and was a kid when the Shah was overthrown by the Islamic Revolution, and during the Iran-Iraq war. People who she loved were imprisoned and killed by the fundamentalist leadership. Her family lived in constant fear of government and military interference and reprisal. They could arrest and murder people for little to no reason. Satrapi was there and saw all of that. So the movie is really realistic.
Seeing the Islamic Revolution through the eyes of a young girl is an exciting prospect. Especially when she has westernized. That part of the story is pretty great. We get to see how a child can be confused and easily swayed by a protest march or her parents' opinions. We see how children sought out heros and played at being them, while at the same time there was war going on and the games the kids played were real and fatal to adults.
But the movie is not really about The Revolution and Iraq-Iran War. Not also, anyway. Persepolis is about Marjane Satrapi, It follows her to Vienna and through puberty, making new friends and discovering boys. The first boy she made love to turned out to be gay. The next one, whom she rambles on about being so perfect, is caught in bed with another girl. She also marries and divorces in quick order. The movie is her story so it is impartial. Satrapi wants us to