Jafar Panahi's first film (after serving as Assistant Director to Abbas Kiarostami, who is credited with this film's script) is another one of the now long list of Iranian masterworks (from Panahi, Kiarostami, Farhadi, Makhmalbaf and others) -- a real New Wave, if it hadn't been going on for decades now. These films manage to interact directly with viewers' subjectivity (our consciousness) even while seemingly portraying almost trivial events. Knowing (or controlling) exactly what the audience is thinking allows the director to playfully tease us, to create suspense, to give pleasure by following or contravening the normal rules of a narrative. Hitchcock also had this skill. I'm not entirely sure how the effect is created - careful use of editing, but also sound design, subjective point-of-view shots, and scripts that narrow our scope to one or two characters carrying out actions, step by step with clear expectations or goals. I don't think there is anything specific about Iranian culture that leads to such a technique (I could be wrong), but for Westerners there is another layer to be enjoyed when one sees that culture in all of its day-to-day mundanity. Here, Panahi has us follow a 7-year-old girl in Tehran on New Year's Eve who wishes to buy a goldfish (part of the celebration). When she is given a 500 tomans note by her mother, more money than is needed, we feel nervous as she rushes off with the note shoved into the goldfish bowl. Will it get lost? Yes, it does (but not until after some fun is had by the director showing two snake-charmers pilfer the money and tease the girl before returning it). Most of the film is spent watching the girl try to get the money back after she subsequently loses it down a drain. Since we don't know what will or can happen, we are completely absorbed by the task and the people who get involved, trying to help. The title of the film itself, doesn't make any sense until the final minutes (out of only 85) - and even then, it feels more like a wink from Panahi than a meaningful symbol. In the end, the film seems like nothing more than a light comedy about kids and their way of seeing the world - but through some mysterious alchemy, it turns out to be more.