Taste of Cherry
The first Iranian film to win the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival is one of great humanity and complexity and boasts one of cinema’s most daring and memorable endings.
Mr Badii (Homayoun Ershadi) is driving around construction sites on the dusty outskirts of Tehran. He’s looking for someone to dispose of his body after he commits suicide and attempts to enlist the help of a young soldier, a seminarian and a taxidermist.
Masterfully shot in a rich, earthy palette by Homayun Payvar, Taste of Cherry, like his previous work on And Life Goes On... (1992), makes exceptional use of framing to give a sense of deep intimacy and vast expanses. Its minimalism, long shots and lack of score allows its deeply human themes to take prominence.
For Kiarostami, the film and the mere exploration of its subject were an expression of hope. As he explained to Godfrey Cheshire, ‘When you have this trump card up your sleeve, you can live better. Just like me right now driving; whenever I feel sleepy, I can pull to the side of the road and rest. But if I didn’t have this opportunity, I wouldn’t be able to continue driving. Knowing that I can stop the car, however, I can keep driving to Tehran.’
‘A hymn to the simple pleasures of life on Earth’ – Sight and Sound
'Best Film of the Year' – TIME magazine, 1997
Notes by Kristy Matheson – Director of Film, ACMI
See more films and season pass in our The Films of Abbas Kiarostami program
Presented by the NFSA in partnership with ACMI and the Sydney Film Festival.
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