Simin (played by Leila Hatami) and her husband Nader (by Payman Moadi) are in a formal court hearing before the appointed Interrogator (by Babak Karimi). Simin explains she wants to leave Iran to provide better opportunities for their only daughter, Termeh (by Sarina Farhadi) and she has a visa – with a time limit. Nader’s father is severely afflicted with Alzheimer’s Disease and he won’t leave him, but time is quickly running out, so Simin wants a divorce. The Interrogator denies her request. Simin goes to live with her mother, leaving Nader and Termeh with her father-in-law (by Ali-Asghar Shahbazi). Nader hires Razieh, (by Sareh Bayat) to care for his father. She is from a deeply religious, working class background and finds caring for him at such close quarters very difficult and potentially sinful. Due to circumstances, an incident happens at Nader’s home which creates a legal stoush for Nader with Razieh and her husband Hodjat (by Shahab Hosseini).
This movie marvellously presents the realistic dilemma faced by Simin and her family. Key life principles of loyalty, truth, honesty and justice are explored as the drama is played out. It is a slow burn, but very well done. Simple facial expressions and gestures demonstrate much towards the emotions in the movie – it is very well done. The performances are excellent – we will no doubt see more of Sarina Farhadi, she is outstanding as Termeh. The drama does present some raw and honest emotion, with real life situations – it will keep you thinking after the movie ends – another appropriate way to leave this movie, as the answers to the dilemma are also difficult. The movie won the Best Foreign Language Film of the Year (Iran) at the 2012 Academy Award (Oscar) presentation and the director, Asghar Farhadi, was also nominated for Best Writing, Original Screenplay – totally deserved. A marvellous movie.
Made in 2011. Directed by Asghar Farhadi