Lovely way to experience an epic poem --- each woman's facial expression, coupled with the mental images created by the subtitles, brought the work to life in a way that...
Born in 1940 in Tehran, Kiarostami started making films in 1970 though his career consisted largely of shorts and educational documentaries until WHERE IS THE FRIEND'S HOME (1987). A simple story of children, like so many of the Iranian films made in the years after the revolution, the film avoids politics but creates a panorama of life lived in Iran. And as in subsequent films, it is cast with non-professionals. The acting is not really realistic but rather akin to watching real people “play” themselves in a documentary, so aware of the camera that they perform to it.
His style only became more complex and rich with his following films. With CLOSE-UP, the true story of a movie-mad unemployed printer arrested for impersonating the famous Iranian film director Mohsen Makhmalbaf, he recreated the event with the actual participants playing fictionalized recreations. The seeming simplicity of technique gives way to a remarkable complexity that he pushes further with LIFE AND NOTHING MORE (1992), THROUGH THE OLIVE TREES (1995) and A TASTE OF CHERRY (1997), which won the Palme d’Or at Cannes. After THE WIND WILL CARRY US (1999), he turned to more experimental projects, including TEN (2002) and SHIRIN (2008), before returning to more familiar narrative storytelling with CERTIFIED COPY (2010), starring Juliette Binoche (his first feature with a major star). He also wrote two films for fellow Iranian director Jafar Panahi, including THE WHITE BALLOON (1995).
“We can never get close to the truth except through lying,” maintains Kiarostami and, in his multi-faceted layering of reality and fiction, he comes closer than any director in revealing the truth of the human soul. Under the directness and deceptive simplicity of his style are pure, unconditional, humanistic moments with simple, silent, open-ended conclusions that are some of the most sublime moments in modern cinema.
– Sean Axmaker
ShirinA vibrant, daringly original work from Abbas Kiarostami, SHIRIN is the flowering of an experimentalist streak that’s been evident in many of the director’s most well-known features, including CLOSE-UP, TASTE OF CHERRY and others. Ostensibly an adaptation of a 12th century Persian poem about a young princess courted by two...Start your free trial to watch