A Separation (2011)

A Separation

Oh, this is the film that makes every movie-lover from all around the world pay close attentions. “A Separation” is an Iranian film that won an Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film last February (and was also nominated for Best Screenplay). It also won a Golden Globe for Best Foreign Languange Film, three Berlin Bears in Berlin International Film Festival, and a bunch of other remarkable international achievements. What makes it so spectacular?

The story come from a simple idea: it’s about a separation, or in another word, a divorce. Simin (played by Leila Hatami) asked for a divorce to her husband, Nadar (played by Payman Maadi), because he didn’t want to live abroad. Simin insisted that they must go and stay abroad for better opportunities of their daughter, Termeh (played by Sarina Farhadi), but Nadar refused because he had to take care of his dad (played by Ali-Ashgar Shahbazi), who’d been suffered from Alzheimer. As Simin insisted to go, she moved out from their apartment, leaving Nadar and Termeh. Therefore, there’s no one taking care of Nadar’s dad, because Nadar worked and Termeh went to school all day long. Then, Nadar hired Razieh (played by Sareh Bayat), a religious woman who lived far from Nadar’s apartment.

"'Cause every time you face a trouble, you give in.
Rather than confront it." - Nadar

In the beginning you’ll be presented with a debate among Nadar, Simin, and a judge about whether this husband-wife have to meet a divorce or not. The debate went so remarkable that I unexpectedly stared at it for some minutes. Then I was like, wow, it’s gonna be a good movie! I mean, it attracted me from the foremost part and, at that moment, I hoped that the tension won’t go down throughout the duration. And it’s proven: it kept rushing, dazzling, and shocking. I guarantee that your emotion will be entangled with the flow of the up-and-down, stressful plot. It’s gonna be heart-touching, too, as some parts went so dramatically mesmerizing. It’s full of dramatic suspense and it’s gonna morally thrill you.

The film was shot in a little bit shaky camera, just like you’re watching it in real life. It’s like you’re involved in the plot and it keeps you out from paying less attention. No special cinematography, music, whatsoever; it just purely relied on the plot and the emotion among the characters. The cast played perfectly: they kept themselves in constant characteristics and they’re so genuine. Well, you may think that the characters were contrastly distinguished to be bad or good, but you’re gonna see more than that. I said, it’s quite thought-provoking. At the ending you’re not gonna easily tell which character is the protagonist and which is the antagonist.

A Separation

Yeah, maybe some people will keep asking, “Is it really that good?”. I don’t know: some people don’t take drama films so seriously. All I can say is that it’s a full-of-conflict, emotional, morally thrilling, high-class drama that went far better than just a TV-film or a soap opera. I gave applause for how they made such a perfect plot. The film took my emotion, played it all along the duration, and didn’t even give me an obvious explanation in the end—like I was left asking and finding the answer by myself. Oh, one more thing: although it’s an Iranian drama, it’s not about a specific religious view afterall (yet it’s still taken as a back-story, but it’s not significant). Watch it, and you’re gonna understand what I’m saying. It’s truly an internationally-acclaimed film.

A Separation

4.5 out of 5 stars

 ▲  Perfect plot and dialogue, genuine acting
 ▼  So dramatic that some people might avoid at the first place

A SEPARATION | ORIGINAL TITLE Jodaeiye Nader az Simin COUNTRY Iran YEAR 2011 RATING Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material GENRE Drama RUNTIME 123 min CAST Payman Maadi, Leila Hatami, Sareh Bayat, Shahab Hosseini, Sarina Farhadi WRITER Asghar Farhadi DIRECTOR Asghar Farhadi IMDB RATING 8.5/10 METACRITIC 95/100 (Universal Acclaim) ROTTEN TOMATOES 99% (Certified Fresh) MORE INFO

Akbar Saputra

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  1. Wow! Love your reviews! I've agreed with most of your opinions! I've even given this movie a 4.5 as well on RT... Will be following your reviews from now on, Awesome work!