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This Iranian film qualifies as a docudrama, and makes some telling comments on society as it tells its tale. In the story, Ali Sabzian, in a fit of whimsey, claims to a fellow passenger on the bus that he is the famous Iranian film director Mohsen Makhmalbaf. So far, so good, but he then becomes involved with his fellow passenger and her family, claiming that he has cast the family's son in a major role and that the setting he intends to use is their home. At some point this tale comes unravelled, and the family takes him to court. A well-meaning judge persuades the family to drop the… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 87%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"The meanings of Close-Up shift, subtly and profoundly, with every viewing; the only certainty is that its rewards are boundless."
‑ Keith Uhlich, Time Out New York
"Kiarostami has made a film that looks into the heart of a man accused of a crime and, instead of evil, discovers only sweetness, longing and a sad confusion."
‑ Stephen Holden, New York Times
"Kiarostamis blending of fiction and nonfiction techniques produces a film that can be peeled back layer by layer, revealing something new at each level."
‑ Christopher Long, Movie Metropolis
"That it remains difficult to classify Kiarostami solely as either a great director or a great journalist at the film's end only enhances the film's power."
‑ Jeremy Heilman,
"Abbas Kiarostami's brilliantly perceptive film is based on a true story, but is done in mock-documentary style."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"Successfully blends fact with fiction to produce a work more compelling than any of today's infotainment programs."
‑ Gary Dowell, Dallas Morning News
"Does Close-Up reveal the truth? I'd prefer to say it reveals the beauty of distortion."
‑ Josh Larsen, LarsenOnFilm
"... a brilliant mix of contrivance, intimacy, distance, and dramatic closure peered into like a voyeur..."
‑ Sean Axmaker, Parallax View
"Close Up is still the definitive film-on-film commentary."
‑ Ed Gonzalez, Slant Magazine
"Kiarostami's film has artichoke-like layers which, once peeled, are forever resonant."
‑ Michael Atkinson, Village Voice
"...not quite close enough."
‑ Chris Barsanti, PopMatters
"Compelling and utterly fascinating, but be warned: This is a rough-edged film that constantly shoves the viewer's face into the fact that it is a film."
‑ Ken Hanke, Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
"The more one thinks about Close-Up, the richer it gets."
‑ Jeffrey M. Anderson, Combustible Celluloid
More reviews for Close-up on Rotten Tomatoes