62 of 68 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Insightful and challenging - a brilliant movie!
A real gem of a movie that provides a very interesting (and quite surprising) insight into today's Iranian society. Although the story is better left untold, the script challenges you in your perception and opinion of the main characters scene after scene. The acting is top-notch and, although the pace is quite measured, the movie is never dull or boring. A movie I would...
Published on 2 July 2011 by The Grenouille
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars rather grim film
very well acted but a rather grim film do not watch it if you feel down its more of a film buffs film
Published 7 months ago by JOHN COKE
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17 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bridging the cultural divide,
This review is from: A Separation [DVD] (DVD)At a time of great ignorance in the west of life in modern Iran this film provides some useful insights. I was struck by how similar the issues are in some ways to those of a British couple facing separation, yet also by the extent of the cultural differences. The wife wants to leave the country with her daughter, but her husband has the power to forbid it. The perceptive teenage daughter is caught between her parents, and chooses at first to stay with her father in a desperate attempt to keep her parents together. The wife goes off to live with her own parents, leaving her estranged husband with the problem of how to obtain day care for his father, who suffers from dementia. The woman who is hired for this task through a casual arrangement proves unable to cope. There is a fascinating scene in which, concerned for the old man who is incontinent, she phones an imam for advice as to whether it is permissible for her to help her charge to clean himself. The husband returns home to find the flat empty and his father in a state, and matters turn violent when the carer comes back without a good explanation. In the ongoing dispute, the complexity of the issues is clearly shown, with right on both sides, and one's sympathies are divided.
This is a tightly plotted and entertaining drama, despite the at times grim theme - a kind of middle eastern update of Kramer versus Kramer (American film about a divorced couple with Meryl Streep and Dustin Hoffman) and in my view much deeper. We are thrust into the midst of some very convincing dramatic exchanges. The Iranian justice system is intriguing as we see the various protagonists crammed into an office, arguing loudly with each other and with the official whose task it is to decide on what seems an arbitrary basis who should be charged and who should be held in jail pending trial. Although harsh, Iranian society seems in some ways more deeply moral and concerned with fairness and right versus wrong than our own. Ironically, as in Britain, the better educated and wealthier couple's rights win out over those of the poorer family.
"Separation" is not just a drama with an appeal which crosses cultural boundaries. It also increased my understanding of Iranian culture and deserves to be more widely viewed to break down our ill-founded prejudices.
4.0 out of 5 stars Three cheers for Iranian cinema!,
This review is from: A Separation [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)This film starts very slowly. For the first thirty minutes, I wondered why I was even watching it. It seemed a thinly disguised documentary about a man, Nader, with a senile father, and whose wife, Simin, is leaving him. Their eleven year-old daughter, Termeh, is emotionally torn between her parents. Ordinary enough, and nothing specifically Iranian about it.
That all changes when Nader hires a carer for his father. A deeply religious, pregnant young woman called Razieh. Unfortunately, one day, she leaves the house and ties the elderly man to the bed, to stop him wandering off. When Nader returns, Razieh is nowhere to be found and the old guy is close to death. Nader revives him, and when Razieh returns he berates her and fires her. She becomes so upset, he has to forcibly eject her from his flat. She then miscarries.
What follows is a series of trips to a judge to determine the true course of events and who did what, when, to whom. No one is truly honest, although things improve in this respect as the movie goes on, and in this sense, the characters develop.
By the end, it is the women who emerge with the credit. The men - Nader and Razieh's husband, Hodjat - look dysfunctional and incapable of progress. I won't say any more, because that would involve spoilers.
The acting is superb. For some strange reason, I really like the Iranians, though obviously not the clerics, the revolutionary guards, or any of that dismal crowd. Iranian cinema is a credit to the nation, and shows the world that this country is far from the evil beast portrayed in TV series such as Homeland. In this rich, multilayered film, you really appreciate that.
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent film.,
This review is from: A Separation [DVD] (DVD)Moral dilemma: trade-offs between right and wrong are sometimes very difficult. Highly recommended to discerning viewers who also may enjoy good quality foreign films.
5.0 out of 5 stars A Separation,
This review is from: A Separation [DVD] (DVD)An excellent thoughtful film which points out that no matter where people come from they have emotional difficulties just like the rest of us. Thank you
5.0 out of 5 stars My opinion about the DVD "A Separation",
This review is from: A Separation [DVD] (DVD)The DVD was in very good conditions. It has subtitles which helped me in its understanding. It fulfilled my expectations. I would vividly recommend it to a friend.
5.0 out of 5 stars A Separation DVD,
This review is from: A Separation [DVD] (DVD)Brilliant film which gradually unfolds a complex plot, showing how inter-relationships affect a range of people, whether they like it or not
5.0 out of 5 stars Masterpiece.,
This review is from: A Separation [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)This is a naturalistic human drama few can't be riveted by. On a first viewing it was impossible to anticipate where this initially simple tale about a couple's separation would lead to. It's astonishing. Watch it!
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous,
This review is from: A Separation [DVD] (DVD)A touching story of every day life and problems. Wonderfully acted and filmed, touching characters. As far from a hollywood cliche as you can get.
5.0 out of 5 stars A Separation,
This review is from: A Separation [DVD] (DVD)A very high-quality production from a superb Iranian director. In Farsi language (with English sub-titles). This is an excellent drama in anybody's language as well as a useful commentary on Iranian social and domestic issues.
5.0 out of 5 stars Great film!,
This review is from: A Separation [DVD] (DVD)I really enjoyed this film, I don't mind films with subtitles- it's the only way I can watch films in my house with the noise of the kids LOL
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A Separation [DVD] by Asghar Farhadi (DVD - 2011)