A powerful film that has a question, how do we know if something is real or fake.
A man is disguised and pretends himself to be a film director; he uses that alibi so as to feed himself and earn some money. Now that he is satisfied, he overdoes it to a point that he gets caught by the law. But wasn't he real to a right amount of time, are people so easily convinced and if all is true, then what is the real truth? Now, this might sum up an intrigue I kept jotting myself as I was curious even after the end of the film.
Primarily, I thank criterion again for putting this in their collection and helping me learn about it. I respect their collection much. Secondly, I was lucky to have decided to watch this on Sunday night as this kind of film makes up most of the lost weekend. It simply gives me a viewer joyous, because this is not a regular movie that has a beginning with the introduction of hero, and ending with a big fight or dance. This film has questions, be it of identity or even purpose of existence and means of survival. That's like fodder for the cattle of viewers, and I love such good food which makes me relish as well as force me try the same taste again.
Abbas Kiarostami took this story from a real incident and made it as a docu-drama, and he did it with finesse and perfection. So thanks to him in a big way. As my earlier Kiarostami movie which is WHERE IS FRIEND'S HOME, this film is also low on production values and rich in content.
Thanks to the ensemble cast who have played out their real life characters here. Kiarostami pulled it off astonishingly well. I would be critical if I said that anybody in the film acted well. Indeed, it's not called acting, it's called living the role, and each one has done that exquisitely well. Kiarostami also used the sound superbly; it was real and yet so dramatic. The dialogues conveyed a deeper philosophical meaning, and they had layers. The questions the judge put across to the accused were well drafted, and they clarified most of my doubts as a viewer too.
As and when I cast a logical doubt; the film returned me the answer asking a similar question that was running through my head and it was phenomenal in my perspective. Seldom, I have seen such a thing that keeps you glued making you think and as if it has heard your questions, answers you back. Kiarostami seems to have known the psyche of a viewer way too well, that he might have himself asked so many questions before putting the script in place.
Also, I got to know of another Iranian director in this film Mohsen Makhamalbaf. Maybe I will catch up with some of Mohsen's films too. But for now, I am happy to have seen this and reviewing it for my own good gives me happiness.
I am going with 4/5 and please consult this in any which way possible, and I assure you that you will be subjected to a different kind of experience that's unique, to say the least.
Also, my review of another Kiarostami movie which is WHERE IS FRIENDS HOME?