Fireworks Wednesday (Chaharshanbe-soori) (2016)
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Critic Reviews for Fireworks Wednesday (Chaharshanbe-soori)
Farhadi manages to skirt the political and focus on human emotion, deception and frailty with such force that his setting and artistic restraints are rendered near irrelevant.
Tehran on the eve of the Muslim New Year provides the backdrop for this engrossing Iranian drama about a marriage in crisis.
Mournful, enigmatic and compulsively engrossing, "Fireworks Wednesday" gives viewers a chance to watch a master at work - before he was acknowledged as a master.
Any time you get to see a radiant bride-to-be (Taraneh Alidoosti) try on her dress and admire her reflection at the outset, you know that bliss is in the crosshairs.
Audience Reviews for Fireworks Wednesday (Chaharshanbe-soori)
A mildly intriguing look at marital life and strife told largely from an outside observer's perspective. While the story is capably handled and deftly told, however, I must also admit that there's not a lot here that's especially innovative, masterful or captivating. The sometimes-melodramatic narrative, with its allusions to infidelity and relationship discord, may be daring by Iranian audience standards, but it's hardly the stuff of groundbreaking material in the world of cinema at large. Also, its less-than-subtle metaphors grow a bit too obvious as the movie progresses. All in all, "Fireworks Wednesday" makes for a nice matinee offering but not a landmark work in the annals of filmmaking.
The more films I see by Asghar Farhadi the more I appreciate him. He just has a keen eye for the little moments and small details that make up life. Definitely one of his more focused films and an obvious precursor to his most recent films. Can't wait to see his other movies!
After being blown away by A Separation, I decided to delve into director Asghar Farhadi's oeurve. Fireworks Wednesday, centers around familiar terrain: a broken marriage, as see through the eyes of a young housekeeper, and by extension, the audience. Farhadi's directorial style is subtly powerful: he takes his time, and allows the information to creep in at its own pace, instead of feeling a more Westernized need to shoehorn it all into the first 10 minutes. He also seamlessly shifts our point of view over and over again, confronting the audience to think twice about any preconceived notions we might have about his characters -- our assumptions, and their reliability. He's not afraid to allow a scene to develop, and he fearlessly trusts his actors. He'll direct in a more "invisible" style, but he astutely knows when to mix it up and reposition the camera, or change vantage points to inform the audience about a character's motivations. In this film, the martial strife hits a fever pitch and culminates in a show stopping long shot down an elevator, and into the street that has to be seen to be believed. I honestly don't think it could have been shot any better, and the mis-en-scene is pitch perfect. A theme that occupies Farhadi appears to be the corrosive underbelly of Persian culture, and its stifling traditional values. This story takes place on Chaharshanbe Suri (the Persian New Year) and all throughout the film, you hear fireworks in the distance. Near the end of the film, there's this great sequence where two characters are driving in the car, and through the windows you see a succession of fireworks, and fire in the streets. After dwelling on these details for a minute or two, the metaphorical meaning seeps in -- these relationships are just as combustible. It's a subtle detail, but very powerful -- and, for me, that's a great way to describe Farhadi's style: subtle, but powerful.
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