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Movie Review: A Separation

Alternate Title: Secrets and Lies

Story: This film has it all. Incredible acting and a riveting plot about little lies that keep growing until they are out of control. It takes place in contemporary Iran. We get a small glimpse into a society that is riven with class and gender distinctions, and a judicial system that is overpowered by religious doctrine.

The film starts out in a courtroom where Simin is trying to get a divorce from her husband Nadar. She wants to leave the country with their 11 year old daughter, Termeh, but he won't leave because he has to take care of his elderly father who has Alzheimer's disease. The judge will not grant the divorce and so they separate.

Bringing in a housekeeper to care for his father brings additional drama. A fight, a lie, another lie and on and on. The setup takes awhile to exposit but once it is all laid out - the pace quickens and we get involved in everyone's lives. Who is good? Who is bad? Who is right? Who is wrong? Who gets torn apart and is justice ever served?

This is a fine film and I highly recommend it to all. It was written, produced and directed by Asghar Farhadi. It is in Persian, with English subtitles.

Watch the trailer here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B2Sswx_vrWk

Acting: The entire cast is sensational including: Leila Hatami (Simin), Peyman Moadi (Nader), Shahab Hosseini (Hodjat), Sareh Bayat (Razieh), Sarina Farhadi (Termeh), Babak Karimi (Judge), Ali-Asghar Shahbazi (Nader’s Father), Shirin Yazdanbakhsh (Simin’s Mother), Kimia Hosseini (Somayeh) and Merila Zarei (Ms. Ghahraei).

Predilection: I like to see Oscar nominated films.

Trivia: Asghar Farhadi is the first Iranian filmmaker to win a Golden Globe (Best Foreign Language Film, A Separation). First Iranian filmmaker to receive a nomination for a British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) Award (Best 'Film Not in the English Language,' A Separation. Father of Sarina Farhadi who played Termeh, the 11-year-old Daughter of Nader and Simin, in A Separation.

Critters: None

Food: None

Sex Spectrum: Definitely none

Visual Art: A fascinating look at he homes of Iranian citizens.

Theater Audience: About 30 people.

Weather: Not a factor

Sappy Factor: 0

Quirky Meter: 0

Squirm Scale: 2

Drift Factor: I paid attention throughout

Predictability Level: I was not sure what was going to happen.

Tissue Usage: 0

Oscar Worthy: It has already won the awards below. Is an Oscar out of reach?

Winner, Best Picture= Golden Globes (USA) Foreign Films
Winner, Best Picture= Berlin International Festival (GER)
Winner, Best Picture= Durban Film Festival (ZA)
Winner, Best Picture= Amsterdam World Cinema (NL)
Winner, Best Picture= British Independent Film Awards (UK)
Winner, Best Picture= BBC World Cinema Awards (UK)
Winner, Best Picture= New York Film Critics (NY)
Nomination, Best Foreign Film= Academy Awards (USA)

Big Screen or Rental: Chances of your seeing this on the big screen are small.

Length: Two hours