On July 1983, lawmakers in Teheran decided to close off a section of the capital to regular traffic. Only drivers with special permits could cross the road blocks set up at various intersections leading to the restricted zone.
Well, Iran is not Germany. Respect the law? Only if you can’t get away by pleading your right to an exemption to the traffic cops. Just this time, please. I won’t do it tomorrow.
Kiarostami set up shop at one of those intersections and filmed the interaction of one cop with the many drivers trying to enter the restricted zone. The results are predictable. Drivers without permits trying all kind of excuses to get through. The presence of a hospital a block away within the zone justifies a variety of medical excuses. The poor cop seems overwhelmed and in exasperation lets many through in violation of the law. Recidivists are recognized, confronted with yesterday’s promise not to try again, and we are back at square one. Go ahead my fellow citizen, break the law and have a good day. —IMDb
Abbas Kiarostami was born in Tehran, Iran, in 1940. He graduated from university with a degree in fine arts before starting work as a graphic designer. He then joined the Center for Intellectual Development of Children and Young Adults, where he started a film section, and this started his career as a filmmaker at the age of 30. Since then he has made many movies and has become one of the most important figures in contemporary Iranian film. He is also a major figure in the arts world, and has had numerous gallery exhibitions of his photography, short films and poetry. He is an iconic figure for what he has done, and he has achieved it all by believing in the arts and the creativity of his mind. —World Cinema Foundation