Forushande [The Salesman] (2016)

Forushande
Director: Asghar Farhadi
Writer: Asghar Farhadi
Cast: Taraneh AlidoostiShahab HosseiniBabak KarimiMina SadatiMojtaba PirzadehFarid Sajjadi Hosseini
Seen on: 25.4.2017

CN: rape, assault

Plot:
Ranaa (Taraneh Alidoosti) and Emad (Shahab Hosseini) are not only a couple, they also work together on a play – Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman. When they have to move house, they move into an apartment a friend of theirs had rented out, but needs new tenants for. Ranaa and Emad move in, despite being a little weirded out by finding the previous tenant’s stuff still in the apartment. Then Ranaa spends the night in the apartment on her own and is assaulted and raped by an intruder, turning both her and Emad’s life upside down.

Forushande comes highly recommended and lauded, but unfortunately it didn’t work for me. I couldn’t go along with the story that centers the men and throws the women under the bus.

[Slight Spoilers]

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Le passé [The Past] (2013)

Le passé
Director: Asghar Farhadi
Writer: Asghar Farhadi
Cast: Ali Mosaffa, Bérénice Bejo, Tahar Rahim, Pauline Burlet, Elyes Aguis, Jeanne Jestin, Sabrina Ouazani
Part of: Viennale

Plot:
Ahmad (Ali Mosaffa) just returned to France from Iran to finalize his divorce from Marie (Bérénice Bejo). What he doesn’t know is that Marie already lives with a new man, Samir (Tahar Rahim) and his son Fouad (Elyes Aguis), a realization with which he struggles a bit. But not as much as Marie’s oldest daughter Lucie (Pauline Burlet). Since Ahmad and Lucie get along very well, Marie asks him to discover what’s going on. Ahmad agrees and suddenly finds himself deeper in his ex-wife’s new life than he thought he would be.

Le passé starts off as a very well-made, very normal divorce story. It then descends into melodramatic depths, though, that only hurt the credibility of and my interest in the story.

le-passe

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Jodaeiye Nader az Simin [A Separation] (2011)

Jodaeiye Nader az Simin
Director: Asghar Farhadi
Writer: Asghar Farhadi
Cast: Peyman Maadi, Leila Hatami, Sareh Bayat, Shahab Hosseini, Sarina Farhadi

Plot:
Nader (Peyman Maadi) and Simin (Leila Hatami) are in the middle of getting a divorce. Simin got a visa for them to leave Iran and provide opportunities for their daughter Termeh (Sarina Farhadi) she would otherwise not have. But Nader’s father (Ali-Asghar Shahbazi) suffers from Alzheimer’s and Nader doesn’t want to leave him behind. When the court doesn’t agree with their divorce, they separate and Nader hires Razieh (Sareh Bayat) to help him take care of his father. But Razieh is under a lot of pressure herself and the situation quickly escalates.

The film is well acted and an interesting look at Iranian society but it just left me absolutely and astoundingly cold. And without that emotional connection, it was boring.

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