Written and directed by Marva Nabili, the first woman to direct a film in Iran, The Sealed Soil tells the story of a young woman in pre-Islamic revolution Iran caught between the traditional values of her small village and her own yearnings for independence and individuality. Made surreptitiously in 1977 just as the Ayatollah Khomeini regime was coming to power, a rough cut of The Sealed Soil was smuggled out of Iran by the director in a falsebottomed suitcase, and taken to the U.S., where she completed her final cut. The film has never been seen in Iran. Already 18 and not yet married, Rooy-Bekheir (Flora Shabavis) is ostracized by relatives and friends for turning down a string of marriage proposals. While rejecting the pressures of tradition, she also rejects the pressure of change, namely in the form of a new town being built across the road to replace her village. Rebelliously, she retreats further and further into her inner world---even daring, when alone in the woods, to strip pff her head-scarf and her shirt---untill she implodes into an hysterical nervous breakdown. Convinced that their daughter is possessed by an evil spirit, her family calls in an exorcist.