1983, Abbas Kiarostami, Iran, 52 min. (Total show: 88 min.)
- Sat, Sep 21st 5:00pm
“One of the most exciting experiments of Kiarostami's career."—Alberto Elena, The Cinema of Abbas Kiarostami
Kiarostami's own youthful employment as a traffic cop informs this short documentary feature. Filmed in tight, telephoto close shots, it centers on a single policeman who is attempting to enforce a regulation restricting traffic in the center of Tehran. As he arbitrates an endless barrage of excuses and exhortations from the city's notoriously anarchic drivers, the policeman becomes a tragicomic antihero struggling to maintain order ("You must respect the plan!" he keeps saying) in the face of a steady stream of chaos.
Preceded by THE CHORUS (1982, 18 min.), a post-Revolution political allegory centering on an old man who turns off his hearing aid to escape the noise around him, and ORDERLY OR DISORDERLY (1981, 18 min.), a variation on FELLOW CITIZEN's theme of order vs. chaos that "inaugurated the audacious irony and reverberant symbolism that would become Kiarostami's mode of creation for the rest of his career" (Richard Brody, The New Yorker). All in Persian with English subtitles. New DCP digital restorations. (MR)