Another excellent film from Asghar Farhadi featuring taut dialogue and a rich 35mm canvas. The acting is superb, and Farhadi must be commended for his subtle ability to capture the nuances of modern Iran. I was mildly disappointed in the ending as I would have preferred more ambiguity in light of the mystery surrounding earlier parts of the film.
The first of Farhadi's masterpieces. Takes the framework of L'Avventura and injects such emotional chaos, such dramatic tension that is not released until the end of the movie. As with all his films the acting is superb, the visuals catch moments which could otherwise be swept away with the story. I feel this director is the leader in creating compressed, emotional chaotic dramas in modern cinema.
This is film has, in a way, the subtle quality some directors, like Nadine Labaki are able to give to their work. Without ever even coming close to producing an outright militant subversive art piece, they are very diligent in addressing some of the most important social issues. Some chinese director seem to be doing this also, and Kiarostami was always like this. Regimes have a hard time with this. How to censor?
The touchstone for Westerners watching "About Elly" may be '"L'Avventura" with nicer people', but its remorselessly building sense of foreboding gives an indication of an Iranian society where inchoate implication, ostracism, suicide, and above all blame lie just beneath what should be the happiest of occasions.
A bitter end is much better than bitterness without ending. Beautiful and complex, mr. Farhadi makes no exception, but it was a bit hard for me to empathise with the entire proportion of the "dishonoring" drama that muslim women have to confront and are trapped into, while trying to ignore the constant "so what?" liberal feminist question in my head.