Work in Progress (No, really)

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Darbareye Elly/About Elly

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This is the second of what has become known as the "Lies Trilogy" by Asghar Farhadi. It takes some time to boil, but when this film picks up its pacing and intensity, it really becomes a masterpiece.  The plot is simple, a family and the school teacher of one of the children of one of the wives travel north to a beach area for a vacation. Ahmad, a man from Germany (and part of the family) has also joined them. The teacher's friend, Sipedeh, is hoping to match up Ahmad and Elly. All the characters in the film bring their own "baggage," Ahmad and Elly being no exceptions.

The film focuses not so much on the lies we tell, but more so on the consequences of those lies. In addition to this concept of lies, one could also add the concept of half-truths -- ambiguous things that teeter between truth and falsehood, and things that are lacking some sort of precious piece of information.

"About Elly" is very much an artsy film, but most Persian films are. In comparison to "A Separation" the pacing seems a bit faster, a half-step at most. But that subtle increased pacing does more for building the intensity and anguish of the characters. Moreover, it's more suited for a film a like this where the anguish of the characters is different from the anguish found in "A Separation." The acting in both films is great, but personally, I felt like there was little bit of overacting in this film. It wasn't characteristic of all the characters, but at some moments it just felt like one or two were reaching too far or the performance seemed somewhat hollow. Again, I only felt like this during one or two moments in the films; otherwise, the acting is top-notch.

I should also mention here that in my humble opinion, Peyman Moadi should just always have a beard. He looks so much cooler. You know its true.

Oh, and also Elly was hot.

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