And Life Goes On (Zendegi va digar hich) (Life, and Nothing More)

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100%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 12

92%

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User Ratings: 893
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Movie Info

The thin distinction between fiction and reality comes in for some blurring in this fact-based near-documentary. Learning of a major earthquake, the director of a children's movie, Where Is My Friend's Home?, is worried about two of his performers in that film. He sets out with his son to interview the survivors and learn the fate of his two acquaintances. However, he hires locals to play himself and his son and hires local earthquake survivors to play other earthquake survivors. When his alter-egos discover the actors, they are two people who have been hired to impersonate the two men. Even though every story told by the filmmaker is accurate, as are the settings and scenes of devastation, everything is just one step away from reality. Even unsympathetic reviewers saw some saving grace in this self-conscious posturing, in that it is aware of itself; as one old man says: "They told me to say this was my house, but my real home was destroyed in the quake." In addition to coy games played with reality, the film is a moving testament to the will to survive and get on with life, as it shows refugees crowded into a tent to cheer a soccer game being shown on television. Director Abbas Kiarostami has explored the blurred line between fiction and reality before in his well-received film Close-Up, a true story about a man who was arrested for impersonating a movie director, featuring all the real-life participants in a slightly fictionalized re-telling of the events. ~ Clarke Fountain, Rovi

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Critic Reviews for And Life Goes On (Zendegi va digar hich) (Life, and Nothing More)

All Critics (12) | Fresh (12)

Audience Reviews for And Life Goes On (Zendegi va digar hich) (Life, and Nothing More)

  • Apr 10, 2017
    Kiarostami blurs once again the line that separates reality and fiction, this time even making a reference to one of his previous films to offer us a delicate, compelling look at how people can move on with their lives and even help each other in the face of a terrible real tragedy.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer
  • Jun 27, 2014
    <i>Life, and Nothing More</i>, more properly titled also as <i>And Life Goes On...</i> takes place in the aftermath of the earthquake of Guilan that killed more than 50,000 people. This place happens to be near the location of <i>Where is the Friend's Home?</i> (1990). Therefore, the director of this movie decides to travel to this area with the purpose of finding out the fate of the two key characters in the Iranian modern classic. But... The director of that movie was Abbas Kiarostami, wasn't he? Well, not according to this film!! The importance of this movie in particular is extremely massive because of too many reasons to be counted... and yet, there I go. a) It represents the turning point in Kiarostami's vision, as his visual style of compelling landscapes and in-car conversations begin to shape the auteur vision of the internationally acclaimed Iranian master. This style will be evident in the impressionistic existentialism of <i>Taste of Cherry</i> (1997), and in the psychological poetry of <i>The Wind Will Carry Us</i> (1999). b) It is the first attempt by Kiarostami to take his meta-film concept to a whole other level. Being the second installment in the Koker trilogy, which refers to the town of Koker in which the protagonist of <i>Where is the Friend's Home</i> lived, you will notice that this wasn't filmed in immediate continuity after the first movie, but <i>Through the Olive Trees</i> (1994) was. In my personal opinion, the documentary <i>Homework</i> (1989) and <i>Close-Up</i> (1990), his absolutely groundbreaking and endlessly brilliant masterpiece, were the neccesary stepping stones for finally merging, for the very first time, the concepts of reality in documentaries and fiction in movies perfectly for the very first time. c) He is playing with the concepts of reality and fantasy.... Oh boy, here I go with my Levels dissection technique of reality and meta-reality again! Boring, I know: + <b>Level 1: <i>Where is the Friend's Home?</i>.-</b> Back in 1987, the whole world saw a minimalist movie of heart-moving, humble and tender proportions. It was the first significant movie of the master by that time. By this time, the only levels in existence was this one, and Level 2, which referred to Kiarostami breaking the movie. Yet <i>And Life Goes On...</i> dared to break the second level from a meta-reality perception. + <b>Level 2: <i>And Life Goes On...</i>.-</b> Finding the protagonist of the previous movie and dissecting Kiarostami's psychology through his alter ego Farhad Kheradmand are the most genius achievements of this thought-provoking and visually hypnotizing spectacle. To what extent is the film documented? To what extent is the film scripted? To what extent does the protagonist reflect Kiarostami? These answers can be obtained with some factual research and interviews, but not essentially obtainable within this film realm, and yet, despite its tragic aftermath imagery and inert rocky settings with some astonishing green hills, the film seems dead in the surface and yet emanates a substantial amount of life that is capable of rejuvenating the film appreciation of the modern viewer, so long submerged in Hollywood standards. The landscapes are a contradiction of destruction and beauty, like an impossible coexistence. Is it possible, then, for reality and fantasy to coexist? It turns out that both, in fact, share a scary degree of interchangeableness, which is the main idea of the film. And yet, that idea is communicated through a film, not a documentary. What a fascinating, self-assuring paradox! 96/100
    Edgar C Super Reviewer
  • Mar 11, 2013
    absolutely brilliant next-level stuff, but don't watch it until you've seen 'where is the friend's home?' it's a crime that these aren't available on dvd in us
    Stella D Super Reviewer

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