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Like Someone in Love

Like Someone in Love (2013)



Average Rating: 7.2/10
Reviews Counted: 85
Fresh: 69 | Rotten: 16

In his first film outside his native Iran, director Abbas Kiarostami maintains the mysterious, reflective mood of previous triumphs.


Average Rating: 7.3/10
Critic Reviews: 33
Fresh: 28 | Rotten: 5

In his first film outside his native Iran, director Abbas Kiarostami maintains the mysterious, reflective mood of previous triumphs.



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Average Rating: 3.3/5
User Ratings: 2,050

My Rating

Movie Info

When Akiko (Rin Takanashi), a lovely Tokyo student who moonlights as a call girl, is dispatched to a new client in the suburbs, she is surprised to find the shy and elderly Takashi (81-year-old stage actor Tadashi Okuno), a committed academic constantly distracted by work-related phone calls. The lonely widower seems far more interested in playing house than having sex, however, and the young woman soon falls asleep. The next day, when the two encounter Akiko's volatile boyfriend Noriaki (Ryo


Art House & International, Drama

Abbas Kiarostami

May 20, 2014


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All Critics (85) | Top Critics (33) | Fresh (69) | Rotten (16)

Making only his second film outside of his native Iran, Kiarostami undercuts the rigid protocols of polite Japanese society with intimations of violence.

April 12, 2013 Full Review Source: Globe and Mail
Globe and Mail
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Kiarostami's apparent simplicity masks serious complexity.

April 11, 2013 Full Review Source: Toronto Star
Toronto Star
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Kiarostami is masterful in his layering of space, using glass walls, mirrors, and, in one instance, the aligned side windows of parked cars to suggest a world of divisions, both between people and within them.

March 15, 2013 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
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Maybe it all serves a purpose, but a movie about empty people doesn't necessarily have to feel empty itself.

March 15, 2013 Full Review Source: Detroit News
Detroit News
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A Rorschach test of our own responses to the intimate drama unfolding before us.

March 14, 2013 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
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The latest small, perplexing masterpiece from the Iranian filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami, who in recent years has chosen the path of a world director.

March 14, 2013 Full Review Source: Boston Globe
Boston Globe
Top Critic IconTop Critic

There's some artful fiddling with plot expectations, but the film's evident self-regard makes this a rather undergraduate provocation.

July 29, 2013 Full Review Source: Scotsman

[An] infuriating - but also fascinating - effort ...

July 29, 2013 Full Review Source: Scotsman

Like Someone in Love... is like a puzzle that takes an eternity to complete and yet still somehow contains too few pieces to be taxing.

June 28, 2013 Full Review Source: New Statesman
New Statesman

As an exercise in conveying place, mood and human foible, this is consistently intriguing.

June 22, 2013 Full Review Source: Radio Times
Radio Times

[Kiarostami] almost throws up something magical, here.

June 22, 2013 Full Review Source: This is London
This is London

This is an intriguing, elliptical affair, the emphasis on reflective surfaces (and off-screen voices) reminding us that we are only ever seeing an opaque refraction of the whole picture.

June 22, 2013 Full Review Source: Observer [UK]
Observer [UK]

The septuagenarian's most playful tendencies have been liberated and he has started to make films that look like the work of a younger director raised on vintage Kiarostami.

June 21, 2013 Full Review Source: Irish Times
Irish Times

A frustratingly inscrutable film that fails to engage.

June 21, 2013 Full Review Source: Daily Express
Daily Express

[A] beautiful, subtly tender and narratively slight film ...

June 21, 2013 Full Review Source: The List
The List

A major statement from one of the world's greatest living filmmakers.

June 20, 2013 Full Review Source: Little White Lies
Little White Lies

Gnomic, anfractuous, inconsequential.

June 20, 2013 Full Review Source: Financial Times
Financial Times

Like the best dreams always do, it ends with a jolt, but its ideas and images linger like dust in sunlight.

June 20, 2013 Full Review Source: Daily Telegraph
Daily Telegraph

A tender and touching drama about a young high-class escort who forms a connection with an elderly widower, but certain scenes in this quiet slow-burner feel overstretched and arguably unnecessary.

June 19, 2013 Full Review Source: ViewLondon

A film that feels unique and innovative.

June 17, 2013 Full Review Source: HeyUGuys

Now practically an exile from his homeland, Kiarostami follows Certified Copy with another film-literate relationship drama with the enigmatic overtones of Hitchcock.

June 17, 2013 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

From the incredible opening shot onwards, it's clear Kiarostami's cinematic language translates perfectly in any setting.

June 14, 2013 Full Review Source: The Skinny
The Skinny

Like Someone In Love explores familiar Kiarostami themes - how we slip between roles in our relationships - with a terrifically light touch, making for his best since 1999's The Wind Will Carry Us.

June 11, 2013 Full Review Source: Total Film
Total Film

Veteran Director Abbas Kiarostami's Like Someone is a fine followup to his brilliant Certified Copy. It's lovely, intriguing, stylish and very, very good.

June 10, 2013 Full Review Source: Alt Film Guide
Alt Film Guide

The movie is filled with examples of and references to methods of communication: Books, faxes, cell phone messages, answering machines, intercoms, misunderstood jokes, traffic signals, the honking of car horns, a painting of a parrot learning to speak...

May 20, 2013 Full Review Source: Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)

If you can meet Like Someone in Love on its terms, it has much to recommend it.

April 17, 2013 Full Review Source: Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

Audience Reviews for Like Someone in Love

Another mediocre film from the over-rated Iranian filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami.
March 6, 2013
Bill D 2007
William Dunmyer

Super Reviewer

Kiarostami is off to a wonderful start in the first act, displaying a very refined direction, elegant camera movements and smart storytelling. Still, it is hard to see where he wants to go with this after the two characters meet, lacking a clear direction or purpose.
October 13, 2012

Super Reviewer

Despite her engagement to young garage owner Noriaki (Kase), Akiko (Takanashi) moonlights as a high class prostitute to fund her college studies. One evening, her plans to meet her visiting grandmother are disrupted when her pimp orders Akiko to spend the night with retired sociology professor Takashi (Okuno). When she arrives, she finds a nervous elderly man who seems more interested in being a father figure to the young woman than indulging in any sexual activity. The next morning Takashi drops Akiko off at her college and encounters her irate fiance. Pretending to be Akiko's grandfather, Takashi finds the young man pouring out his emotions to him, but quickly discovers he possesses a violent streak.

Not since the thirties, when central Europe's greatest film-makers fled fascist persecution to work in Hollywood, has cinema seen the level of cultural cross-pollination of the last few years. English actress Kristin Scott-Thomas has become French cinema's leading female star, appearing in more Gallic productions now than Anglo-Saxon ones. Earlier this year we saw the Australian director Cate Shortland working in Germany for the WWII tale 'Lore', despite not speaking a word of German. 'Like Someone in Love' is possibly the most curious example, a Japanese drama written and directed by an Iranian film-maker.

While it doesn't quite feel like a native Japanese film, (there's far too much dialogue), Kiarostami's film seems like it could be based on a short story by someone like Haruki Murakami. This is both the strength and the weakness of 'Like Someone in Love'. The three characters are all interesting but Kiarostami's exploration of them would be far better served as a piece of literature rather than a motion picture. It's an excessively talky picture, with much of the dialogue serving as thinly disguised exposition. That said, there's enough to keep you engaged, thanks mainly to the performances of Takanashi and especially Okuno, who has the most interesting and pleasant face you'll see on any elderly gent.
I'm forever arguing the case of ambiguity but even I found the ending of this film irritating. There's ambiguity and there's abruptness. Kiarostami opts for the latter in this case.
April 7, 2013
The Movie Waffler

Super Reviewer

This being my first Abbas Kiarostami film, I was unsure what to expect, and completely unprepared for what I got. With his latest, Like Someone in Love, Kiarostami manages to fill an artful, carefully paced, intimate drama with a tensity and unease typically reserved for Hitchcockian thrillers. This is a non-traditional narrative full of style, strong performances, and intriguing themes. If you're willing to find your 'in', I highly recommend this film. ~ B+
September 11, 2013
Brad Sweet

Super Reviewer

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