A Taste of Cherry (1997)

Abbi Kiarostami directs Homayoun Ershadi, Abdolrahman Bagheri and Afshin Khorshid Bakhtiari in this Iranian arthouse drama where a man drives around the outskirts of his city trying to find someone to help him with a mysterious task.

Eating my greens? A Palme d’Or winner about a man contemplating mortality in a car on an obscure quest. Should be boring? Doubt I would have gotten much out of it back in 1997 with The Fifth Element and Face/Off frazzling my receptors. Even now these kind of pretentious, minimalist works aren’t my cup of tea but this one has a decent simple hook that keeps you attentive until the end. If you can avoid reading synopsis then the slow drip revelation of what Mr Badii wants from the men he picks up and the glimpses of their working lives on the outskirts of society are all pretty worthwhile. Philosophical discussions are awkwardly had, landscape explored. I wouldn’t hold this kinda thing to the high standard film critics and award panels do but if you did want to dip your toe into non-genre foreign cinema than this is about as good as it gets. Just have patience with it.


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