Saturday 19 Apr

Holy Ghost People

Holy Ghost People examines two sisters whose bond is torn — but by what? After her sibling has been missing for more than a year, Charlotte (Emma Greenwell, TV's Shameless) intends to find out.
04/15/2014 | Comments 0

No Holds Barred

RLJ Entertainment's new Blu-ray for No Holds Barred begins with what seems like dozens of trailers for movies starring pro wrestlers from the WWE talent pool. Each flick went direct to home video, but once upon a time — aka 1989 — one had to go to the multiplex to catch such a spectacle.
04/15/2014 | Comments 0

Knights of Badassdom

In 2008, the third act of the guy comedy Role Models used LARPing — live-action role-playing, that is — as a backdrop for our protagonists' lessons learned. Today, Knights of Badassdom extends that half-hour into a full feature, to the point where viewers are left not smiling, but exhausted. 
04/02/2014 | Comments 0

Switched on

Not everything on television has to appeal to mass audiences. In fact, with the further fractioning of viewership thanks to alternatives like Netflix and VOD, more series can afford to become more niche. Here are five examples of shows both past and present — and new to DVD and/or Blu-ray — that encompass some of the more outrageous ideas ever to go beyond boardroom discussion.
04/02/2014 | Comments 0

Confession of Murder

Seventeen years after slaying 10 women and getting away with it, the charismatic serial killer Du-sok (Park Si-hoo) comes clean with a Confession of Murder, in this 2012 South Korean crime thriller. He does so by publishing a book that dishes all the grisly details.
04/02/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · Movies · Drama · A Separation

A Separation

The Oscar-winning film is a harrowing test in an exercise of how things can get worse.

Phil Bacharach March 1st, 2012

Most global news surrounding Iran concerns its nuclear capabilities and its nutjob leader, but fans of international cinema know there is much more to the Asian republic.


Some of the most exciting and challenging films in the world these days are coming from Iran, so it's no surprise that A Separation, a tense and absorbing domestic drama packed with the suspense of a Hitchcock flick, recently earned the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film.

Opening Friday at AMC Quail Springs Mall 24, the movie unfolds like a Rube Goldberg machine powered by human fallibility, in which generally decent and sympathetic people with understandable motivations make choices that have unimaginably bad results.

At the center is an educated and reasonably well-off couple, Simin (Leila Hatami) and Nader (Peyman Moadi), seeking a divorce. Simin wants to move abroad with their child, but her husband refuses to leave the country because his aged father has Alzheimer's disease. Neither husband nor wife is willing to bend, and so begins a downward spiral.

Simin, who has been her father-in-law's caregiver, moves out of their apartment, forcing Nader to hire a devout Islamic woman named Razieh (Sareh Bayat) to tend for the old man while Nader is at work. But the job is considerably more than Razieh bargained for — the elderly man soils himself and wanders away from home — and the reluctant nurse decides on an unfortunate course of action that spurs another unfortunate choice, and so on.

Dire consequences mount, and to devastating effect. Writer/director Asghar Farhadi is a master at turning the screws, but he does so straightforwardly and always with an unflinching eye on revealing character. The filmmaker also has the benefit of a solid cast, particularly Moadi and Bayat as people trying to do the right thing within the constraints of their own convictions.

In A Separation, however, principles can be a disastrous thing.

  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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