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2 items from 2011

Asghar Farhadi, “A Separation”

28 December 2011 12:07 PM, PST | Filmmaker Magazine - Blog | See recent Filmmaker Magazine news »

Though not as well known outside Iran as Abbas Kiarostami or Jafar Panahi, writer-director Asghar Farhadi has been steadily building an impressive cinematic resume since graduating from Tehran University in 1998 with a degree in dramatic arts. After a stint developing stage plays and TV series for Iran’s national broadcasting corporation, Farhadi co-scripted Ebrahim Hatamikia’s post-9/11 political farce Low Heights, about a desperate man who hijacks a plane carrying his wife and handicapped son. He then moved into the director’s chair with Dancing in the Dust and Beautiful City, a social-issue film concerning the archaic custom of “blood money” (under sharia, the relatives of a murdered Muslim can accept payment for legal vengeance in lieu of capital punishment for the perpetrator) that screened at Film Forum in 2006. Three years later, Farhadi won numerous awards, including the Silver Bear at the Berlinale, for About Elly, a tense, character-driven drama »

- Damon Smith

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Nyff 2011. Asghar Farhadi's "A Separation"

2 October 2011 2:37 AM, PDT | MUBI | See recent MUBI news »

"'It's a screenwriter's film,' said a friend of Asghar Farhadi's A Separation, a designation that is at once accurate and dismissive, on the nose and besides the point," begins Adam Nayman in Reverse Shot. "Yes, the film, which won the Golden Bear in Berlin and received excellent reviews at the Toronto International Film Festival before its [screening] at Nyff, is extremely well-written, but the idea that its writerly qualities should preclude its recognition as vital cinema strikes me as pretty reductive. The film is superbly written, but it's also smartly directed, insofar as there's a continuity between its writer-director's ideas and the visual language he uses to express them. Take, for example, Farhadi's staging of the first scene…"

Segue to Michael J Anderson: "Opening with a pre-credit passage in which separating eponymous leads Nader (Peyman Moaadi) and Simin (Leila Hatami) address an off-camera magistrate in a tight, frontal two-shot, »

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