Films from Iran in theaters, on video

More and more Iranian movies are available to American viewers. Here are some recommendations.

In theaters: Abbas Kiarostami's acclaimed Close-Up is having its US premire at The Screening Room in New York City, courtesy of Zeitgeist Films, and will go on to national engagements. A Moment of Innocence and The Silence, both by Mohsen Makhmalbaf and distributed by New Yorker Films, are now in national release.

Kiarostami's latest film, The Wind Will Carry Us, is slated for theaters later this year, as is Majid Majidi's emotional Color of Heaven.

The Silence and Jafar Panahi's brilliant The Mirror are among five offerings in the New From Iran series scheduled for Jan. 14 to Feb. 27 at the Freer Gallery of Art at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.

On home video: The best source is the Films From Iran series produced by Facets Video in Chicago. Among the available titles are the justly acclaimed Where Is the Friend's Home? and Life and Nothing More by Kiarostami, set in northern Iran before and after a brutal earthquake, as well as such pungent Makhmalbaf films as The Cyclist, about a poverty-stricken man; The Peddler, three harrowing tales of social misfits; and Once Upon a Time, Cinema, a boisterous Iranian fable about film history. Facets can be reached at www.facets.org or 800-331-6197.

(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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