Afra Nariman

Afra Nariman Patron

Favorite films

  • Taste of Cherry
  • Dead Man
  • Modern Times
  • Mirror

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  • Se7en

  • Oppenheimer

  • Tenet

  • Drive-Away Dolls

    ★★★

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  • No Bears

    No Bears

    ★★★★★

    "What’s his problem with Iran?"

    "He feels trapped, with no future, no freedom, and no job."

    With No Bears, Jafar Panahi weaves together multiple layers of story that work together to speak on a myriad of concepts and issues. No Bears is a film about borders — but it’s also a film about love, frustration, humor, culture, tradition, freedom, life, death, and everything else the audience is able to read in between the lines. Perhaps more than anything though, No…

  • Mulholland Drive

    Mulholland Drive

    ★★★★★

    Dreams are clearly constructed of moments from our reality; so why shouldn’t we view reality as at least partially constructed of dreams? 

    The word "dreams" is representative of and can be understood as both our hopes for the future, and our reconstruction of past details from our memories (the dreams sleep is made of) — both of which exist within the fine line between reality and illusion. 

    Few films are open to as much interpretation, not only in their totality,…

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  • Se7en

    Se7en

    “I just don’t think I can continue to live in a place that embraces and nurtures apathy as if it were a virtue.”

    Frightening how similar Detective Somerset’s view of the world is to the murderer John Doe’s. The line between punishing those that dwell in our world of apathy, and instead being willing to fight for that same world, is evidently thinner than most people want to believe. Of all of Fincher’s films that I’ve seen, this one definitely lands with me most.

  • Cure

    Cure

    ★★★★★

    "Who are you?" 

    Overwhelmed, blown away, and at a loss for words. An INSTANT all time favorite. Existential dread has never felt so tangible as this on film. I thought about Camus’ The Stranger, about Aristotle’s Poetics, Bergson’s Laughter, about political philosophy’s Social Contract Theory, about Sartre’s Existentialism is a Humanism and also his Transcendence of the Ego; and I also thought about a bunch of new, frightening things. Along with The Vanishing (1993), arguably the most chilling, distressing, and frightening film I’ve seen. It’s as layered as they come, and I’ll likely have more concrete analysis on future rewatches (plural).

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  • Holy Spider

    Holy Spider

    ★★★★½

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    I had the opportunity to watch this for the second time in theaters; this time a Q&A with director Ali Abbasi and the film’s lead, Zar Amir Ebrahimi followed the screening, in which they spoke about the difficulty in shooting, casting and getting this film finally made, considering the obstacles they faced along the way. 

    For a more comprehensive review of Holy Spider, please refer to/read my first review of the film, here

    ‼️SPOILERS BELOW‼️

    This time around, I’d like…

  • No Bears

    No Bears

    ★★★★★

    A more comprehensive review was written the second time I watched this. You can read that one here

    Speechless. With each new film, Jafar Panahi expands the boundaries of what cinema can be, and what it can mean. Panahi has put together an unbelievably impressive stretch of consecutive works since his filmmaking-ban was put into effect — and No Bears is right there among his best (my favorite). Every film since the ban has been a defining accomplishment in the medium, and…