A film about the making of a documentary. A French film crew has flown to Teheran to make a film, led by the Iranian filmmaker Reza (returning from exile and also the maker of the film about the film), about Iranian youth against the background of political reforms in the country. Reza tries to put straight the negative image that exists in the West about his country, but gets confused by the social abuses he finds in the present situation. He becomes involved in a conflict with Goldmund, the French presenter of the report they are making, who seems to be drawing the alltooobvious conclusions from his first experiences with Iran. Goldmund has meanwhile met Esfandiar, an old student friend who had studied in Paris at the Sorbonne and then returned to his country. In Teheran, he taught literature at university and produced controversial modern plays. Goldmund however finds a completely ruined Esfandiar. Any possibility to teach or make theatre has been taken from him and he is also incurably ill. Yet Esfandiar manages to show Goldmund and the other members of the crew something of his Teheran. The emotional power of music is a major factor in bringing them closer together. The French team becomes very impressed by the hunger for change they find among the people and they become increasingly personally involved with the film project.