Abbas Kiarostami – Copie Conforme (2010)

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In Tuscany to promote his latest book, a middle-aged English writer meets a French woman who leads him to the village of Lucignano.

Euro intellectual recession-time story? I recommend Copie Conforme because of and in spite of the difficulty in watching it. The difficulty resides in the multiple layers involved in the relationship of the two protagonists, not to speak of the three languages that they both speak in various circumstances. The more the the action evolves, the less we seem to understand the real nature of their relationship. What we do know is that those two have a problem of communication. It is this struggle of seduction/rejection, with setbacks and all that make it worth watching. Atmosphere and the man-woman tension is what keeps it going. The filming is impeccable, with lovely scenes of Tuscany, excellent camera, and the great work on surrounding noises, which I believe replaces any music at all. The acting is also very fine, with Binoche deservedly getting a major Cannes Film Festival award.

If you have seen Under The Olive Tree, Kiarostami’s master piece from 1994, you might find Certified Copy to be the continuation 25 years later on a different continent. Here he left Iran for Western Europe because Binoche could not have done this in Iran. A twisted, touching, thoughtful relationship story that plays with what is a copy and what is an original, what is reality and what is imagination. Beautifully filmed and Binoche is at her best. The many languages spoken between the protagonists – none from Iran – just confirmed for me the many levels of a relationship, the confusion and misunderstandings you are confronted with, no matter where you are. Definitely worth seeing and talking about with intelligent friends.

(all text culled from imdb)








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