The film

THE HOST by Miranda Pennell (60 minutes, b/w & colour, 2015)

‘Like the Iranian oil workers who haunt Pennell, this is a film that refuses to get back in its box’ Sukhdev Sandhu, Sight & Sound


While investigating her late parents’ involvement with the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company (now known as BP [British Petroleum]) filmmaker Miranda Pennell comes across the letters of a petroleum geologist in Iran in the 1930’s, who later embarked on a search for the origins of civilization. The film sets out on its own exploration to decipher signs from the fragmented images buried in the BP archive. This journey through images of the past interweaves stories drawn from personal memory and from the records of an imperial history, gradually building a picture of a 20th century colonial encounter. The Host is about the stories we tell about ourselves and others, the facts and fictions we live by – and their consequences.