Beautiful City

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Shah-re ziba

“It’s a penetrating exploration of retribution versus forgiveness, blood money, sacrifice and the intricacies of Iran's Islamic judicial system.” — Laura Kern, NY Times

Director: Asghar Farhadi
Year: 2004
Country: Iran
Running time: 101 mins
Censor Rating: M - cert

Producer: Iraj Taghipoor
Photography: Ali Loghmani
Editor: Shahrzad Pooya
Music: Hamid Reza Sadri

With: Taraneh Alidoosti, Babak Ansari, Faramarz Gharibian, Ahoo Kheradmand, Farhad Ghaiemian, Hooshang Heyhavand, Hossein Farzi-Zadeh

In Farsi with English subtitles

Festivals: Fajr, Montreal 2004 

“In a juvenile detention facility, 18-year-old Akbar (Hossein Farzi-Zadeh) awaits execution for the murder of his girlfriend when he was 16. Meanwhile, outside the prison walls, paroled petty thief Ala (Babak Ansari) offers to help Akbar's sister, Firoozeh (Taraneh Alidoosti, in the first of her three collaborations with director Farhadi), secure clemency from the dead girl’s vengeful father. As Ala and Firoozeh navigate a complex gauntlet of legal and emotional red tape, they find themselves growing unexpectedly close - a tentative romance skillfully woven into the film’s life-or-death narrative. Rooted in spectacular performances by Alidoosti and Ansari, Farhadi’s second feature is a human-scale morality play of shattering force.” — Scott Foundas, Film Society of Lincoln Center