Feb
27

Editorial | In praise of … Asghar Farhadi

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The master film-maker tells a wider world there is a richer modern Iran than is covered by ‘the heavy dust of politics’

Award ceremonies fairly often choose the right winners. Occasionally, they can also make a bit of history. The Oscars made one such award this week by choosing Asghar Farhadi’s movie A Separation as best foreign-language film. The choice was right because the movie is a beautifully judged depiction of the way marital breakdown in any culture can suck children, parents, friends and strangers into its bleak vortex. But the award makes history because A Separation is the first Iranian movie to win an Oscar. Millions of Iranians followed the Hollywood ceremony via illegal satellite dishes, enabling them to hear Mr Farhadi tell a wider world there is a richer modern Iran than is covered by “the heavy dust of politics”. Mr Farhadi is a master film-maker. He has also provided a glimpse of Iran that reveals an intimate and poignantly familiar human fallibility that transcends all political posturing and vaults all the world’s religious and cultural barriers.

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