Sight and Sound - 11/01/2007
"Kiorastami's innovative neo-realist drama-documentary recreates the capture and trial of an Iranian film fan, Hossain Sabszian....[A] thoughtful, compassionate treatment..."
Film Comment - 05/01/2010
"Kiorastami's theme is cinematic illusion, the thin line between fiction and reality....This constant mirroring with the process of filmmaking opens the film up and gives it a quiet power."
A.V. Club - 07/14/2010
"[F]ormally daring....CLOSE-UP is more about the power of images, and how what's on the screen at any given moment can hold our attention completely..." -- Grade: A
With his use of non-actors and his loose use of documentary rules, Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami's (TASTE OF CHERRY) films can often be characterized by asking whether what the viewer is seeing is reality or fiction. The film which perhaps most exemplifies this is CLOSE-UP, ostensibly a documentary about an impostor of another Iranian director, Mohsen Makhmalbaf (GABBEH; ONCE UPON A TIME, CINEMA). Kiarostami tells the story by asking questions from off-screen to those involved in the legal case, then having the participants play themselves in a re-enactment of the events which actually occurred. A masterwork, considered by many to be Kiarostami's best.
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