Incredibly gripping and brilliantly directed, About Elly is a truly memorable and emotionally engaging Iranian drama with an outstanding lead performance by Golshifteh Farahani.
| Original Score: 4/5
Farhadi constructs a taut story, as precariously balanced on luck and lies as that of a French farce, and then lets it spring holes before our eyes.
A remarkable film that deserves as much acclaim as Farhadi's award-winner.
The early singing and charades sequences go on a bit too long, but from the moment there is an incident on the beach, you'll be concerned for everyone involved.
| Original Score: 3/5
Farhadi's films are like moral whodunits, and as Sepideh and her friends gradually unearth the truth, he expertly buffets our sympathies in all directions until the very last shot.
The film's tone is primarily, even exclusively, reflective; observing human behavior simply because humans are interesting.
| Original Score: 8/10
Farhadi's expert at foreboding; these vacationers' sheer exultation is soon limned by a sense of life as coming tragedy, its sure and steady sadness rolling in like the surf.
Farhadi confirms his masterly way with heartrending human dramas.
Really it's a picture of loneliness, in a land where speaking together in honesty and sharing the cries of the heart are things you do only in a crisis or an emergency.
By allowing a slow-build to his drama, Asghar Farhadi ensures we get a feel for the extended family dynamic before wrong-footing the characters and his audience with the suddeness and deftness of a heartbeat.
The film's escalating energy, hysteria even, and moral debates will invite comparisons to the hothouse drama of 'A Separation'.
Bursting with energy, this ensemble drama from Iran is raucous, chaotic and packed with strong emotion
| Original Score: 4.5/5
Superbly acted, morally challenging, packed with legitimate suspense, this is film-making of a high order.
Another shrewdly gauged study of our capacity for deception and self-deception from A Separation's auteur. Emotionally devastating.
Farhadi's gifted storytelling and direction is on show again in a damning look at Iranian society.
A fascinating psychological drama.
Once again, Farhadi has told an ordinary story in an extraordinary way.