Iran, 2003, 95 min, Dir. Jafar Panahi, Not Rated, Farsi with English subtitles, KimStim Films

Crimson Gold

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"Iranian director Jafar Panahi's Crimson Gold is an anti-blockbuster--a deceptively modest undertaking that brilliantly combines unpretentious humanism and impeccable formal values." —J. Hoberman, Village Voice

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Two master filmmakers, Abbas Kiarostami (Taste of Cherry, Close-Up) and Jafar Panahi (Taxi, 3 Faces) team up as writer and director, respectively, on Crimson Gold, a subtle tragedy on class conflict in modern Iran. Hussein (Hossain Emadeddin, a real-life pizza delivery man who has schizophrenia) is a lumbering war veteran swollen by cortisone (for war-induced pain) and reduced to delivering pizzas at night. Through his nightly rounds, he bears witness to the rewards and vanities of the city’s wealthy. He is humiliated when a jewelry shop owner won’t allow him in his store, and under pressure to get married, Hussein awkwardly aspires to higher ground. When an eccentric socialite gives him a taste of luxury, Hussein can no longer accept his lowly status. Kiarostami based the story on an actual newspaper account of a botched robbery attempt at a Tehranian jewelry store by a desperate pizza deliveryman. Winner of the Un Certain Regard Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival.

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