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Videology Essentials: THE WIND WILL CARRY US
Thursday, June 29 @ 6:30 pm
Discussion with film critic Godfrey Cheshire and Iman Tavassoly, co-translator of “In the Shadow of Trees: The Collected Poetry of Abbas Kiarostami” to follow!
“One of the masters of the modern cinema, the Iranian filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami combines a patient and loving attention to characters drawn from daily life and to their landscapes with a precise, canny, and fierce distillation of concrete phenomena into brilliant, vertiginous, and liberating abstractions.” – Richard Brody, The New Yorker
“This ambiguous comic masterpiece could be Abbas Kiarostami’s greatest film to date; it’s undoubtedly his richest…What’s most impressive about this global newspaper and millennial statement is how much it tells us about our world. – Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
“The Wind Will Carry Us is a marvelously assured film…For all the self-important claims certain experts have made on Kiarostami’s behalf, his films are anything but pompous.” – J. Hoberman, The Village Voice
The unexpected death of Abbas Kiarostami left us suddenly without one of the world’s absolute finest directors, and, according to numerous reports, at least two films that were conceived but never finished. Nevertheless, he also left behind an oeuvre with more films deserving the word “masterpiece” than possibly any other, and his work in the ’90s is nearly unmatched in the modern cinema.
His last film of that decade, The Wind Will Carry Us contains Kiarostami’s familiar humanism and reflexivity in its story of Behzad, a journalist who poses as a production engineer to document the mourning rituals of the inhabitants of a remote Kurdish town. The woman, over 100, continues to live, and Behzad finds himself learning to appreciate the lifestyle and charms of the home while struggling to film something without violating its essence. Kiarostami relegates no less than a dozen speaking parts exclusively to off-screen space and often elides significant narrative events as he interrogates the limits of the film medium – it’s no coincidence that he filmed exclusively on digital after this film. Nevertheless, the sophistication and idiosyncrasies of The Wind Will Carry Us never overwhelm the story or undermine the commentary on gender equality, and rural labor and progress vs. its urban counterparts.
Godfrey Cheshire, whose writing on post-revolutionary Iranian Cinema in the early ’90s were instrumental in granting it wider recognition, will be present for a discussion after the film. Godfrey has recently contributed essays for the Criterion releases of Close-Up, Certified Copy and Taste of Cherry and is a staff writer for RogerEbert.com.
Dir. Abbas Kiarostami. 118 min. 1999.
Stick around after the film! Redeem your ticket at the bar for $2 off any drink.