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Monday, July 13, 2009

Kiarostami's new film 'Shirin'

I have reviewed Abbas Kiarostami's new film Shirin for my latest contribution to 3 Quarks Daily. It is an amazing film that should be seen by all. In my review, I suggested a connection between Kiarostami and, improbably perhaps, Pedro Almodóvar. Do feel encouraged to click the link and read it at 3QD. Thanks.

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Anonymous Izabella said...

I saw Shirin yesterday at a film festival and thought it was fantastic. It starts out slowly and a good number of people walked out after the first 10-15 minutes. But it does build up, and the ending is incredibly powerful.

I didn't think that it was about emotional repression or validation of melodrama. Instead, I saw it as a beautiful and moving meditation on how little a woman's condition has changed over the centuries. From what we hear, Shirin's character appears to be as strong-willed and self-reliant as anyone could be, yet she can only be a pawn in men's world. At some point, the look that I started seeing on the women's faces became one of recognition; that was also when I really began to pay attention. Of course the men in the audience would remain indifferent. They wouldn't see any problems with that picture.

The formal device of showing the narrative through women's faces does look weird at first, but eventually we get to see why this film wouldn't have worked any other way. It was perhaps necessary to maintain a formal distance throughout the film so that the closing of that distance at the end would be so devastating. For added measure, it balances the melodrama of the movie that the audience in the film is watching.

4:38 AM, August 01, 2009


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