Tuesday, 6 February 2007

First Week, Feb '07

Hi to all of you,

This week is dedicated to the renowned Iranian director, Abbas Kiarostami. While there could have been any number of combinations – his repertoire is, after all, very large – we think that this brace of films shows off his versatility fairly well. If you have not seen either, all the better!

6th February 2007
6:15 p.m. at the Auditorium

Runtime: 1 hour 40 minutes
Directed by Abbas Kiarostami

This helped Kiarostami increase his standing in no small way when he made it. To encapsulate the premise (and give away nothing), it deals with an underprivileged man who finds new purpose in impersonating none other than the famous Mohsen Makhmalbaf. Based on actual events, the main personalities reprise their real-life roles, ending up with a re-enactment that seems as if it were a newsreel. A fine window into the world of the Iranian people, shorn of artifice.

8th February 2007
6:15 p.m. at the Auditorium

Runtime: 1 hour 43 minutes
Directed by Abbas Kiarostami

A widely acclaimed film, this is NOT the final instalment in the “Koker Trilogy”, according to the director himself. One reason why we are not showing all three, but you should watch them anyway if you get the chance. This film is a study of people coming to terms with themselves and each other in a land recovering from a devastating earthquake. It explores the trappings of identity individuals weave around themselves, oftentimes to their own entrapment. More the regular fable than CLOSE-UP by way of treatment, it nonetheless ends in a much less conventional fashion.

About the director: Abbas Kiarostami (b. 1940) has had a long and varied career that has seen him achieve great things. The “Iranian New Wave” of the late ‘60s spawned a number of notables; Kiarostami was one such, first among equals. To understand him properly one should recognize just how intertwined he is with his culture. His early movies have distinctly poetic tones, and the sense of the self, the individual (not necessarily the director) is ever present. A strong minimalist leaning can be seen in, say, TASTE OF CHERRY (1997), which garnered much praise… and criticism. Some of his later films, such as TEN (2002), push the envelope as regards the docu-fiction interplay. An auteur, and an innovator. Any reading on this gem of an artist is necessarily intricate and, best of all, still an unfolding tale.

With regards,
The Film Club.

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