zodiackiller’s review published on Letterboxd:
Certified Copy seems to be a very divisive film, and from what I've read the explanation is very clear. I loved this, but it was very dependent on Juliette Binoche's performance and character, maybe too much even. Having watched a few Kiarostami's lately I can without a doubt claim that the man loves to make you question the essence of his films. Whether it is a question about fiction or reality, or as in CC, the truth about their relationship, it works mainly because of the humane way he presents his characters.
Through long-shots in the beautiful streets of Tuscany, we get to know James and Elle, and where it all went wrong. Through up-to-the-minute dialogue, the characters' personalities get unveiled and at the same time we explore their past without being told directly. The script is fantastic. But to really enjoy this I think you have to sympathize with the James and Elle, or at least one of them which was my case. I didn't find James engaging at all, but Binoche blew me away. Her performance is world-class and her character is very relatable, not necessarily for me personally, but for people I know. I think empathizing and caring for at least one of these characters are vital for enjoyment in this.
Kiarostami also explores numerous themes, but I was unable to fully comprehend them all this time. It varies from like the title suggests, real vs. copy, and also hypocrisy through critics criticizing other critics. It is a lot to digest, but I still found the themes very valuable this time despite not being able to grasp it all.