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Disparition d'Abbas Kiarostami (1940-2016)

Film Reviews:

Like Someone in Love (2012)
Copie conforme (2010)
Shirin (2008)
Ten (2002)
The Wind Will Carry Us (1999)
Taste of Cherry (1997)
Through the Olive Trees (1994)
Life and Nothing More (And Life Goes On, 1992)
Where Is the Friend's Home? (1987)
We are admirers of the Iranian New Wave here at Ionarts, and the biggest fish in that lake was Abbas Kiarostami. After making his last two films outside Iran, he died yesterday in Paris, after a long battle with cancer. Jacques Mandelbaum has a moving tribute (Abbas Kiarostami, emporté par le vent, July 5) today in Le Monde (my translation)
It is a major loss, of an immense artist -- photographer, poet, and painter -- who has left an indelible mark on the history of world cinema. According to the press agency ISNA, the director, whose health had worsened, had left Tehran last week to undergo a treatment in France, after having had an operation in mid-March in the Iranian capital.

So life comes to an end, even for the director of And Life Goes On. In that magnificent film from 1992, a filmmaker in Tehran, the director's double, is returning with his son to the locations of a previous film, where a deadly earthquake has just occurred, to search for survivors among the children who took part in the film. That search for life in a landscape of death, that humanistic aspiration under the straitjacket of oppression, was in truth the admirable constant of Abbas Kiarostami's work. A work undertaken with courage under the yoke of Islamic censorship, to the point of the director's exhaustion, having left to make films under other skies when the regime hardened its authority.
A master of the slow burn, Kiarostami made movies driven by characters and dialogue, or by the lack thereof, and he will be missed. We will be revisiting his masterpieces this month (see video embedded below).

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