Close Up

5 June 2017: Beginnings and Journeys


The Traveller
Abbas Kiarostami
1974 | 74 min | B/W | Digital

“Kiarostami’s first feature film, and arguably one of his best, The Traveller was made for Kanoon (The Centre for the Intellectual Development of Children and Young Adults). A suspenseful, witty story of a young boy’s determination to travel from his small town to Tehran to attend a national football match, it combines realism with the economy and precision of a visual artist (the director’s first occupation before turning filmmaker). Featuring brilliant performances by a cast of non-actors, the film has one of the most gripping, unforgettable endings in film history.” – Ehsan Khoshbakht

Bread and Alley
Abbas Kiarostami
1970 | 10 min | B/W | Digital

“Based on a real-life incident experienced by Kiarostami’s brother, Taghi, the director’s first film sets the template for his cinema until the late 1980s. It concerns a young boy who is unable to return home with the bread he has bought, due to his fear of a stray dog in an alley. The film’s jazzy soundtrack, which pretty much dictates the editing, is based on the Beatles’ Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da.” – Ehsan Khoshbakht

Abbas Kiarostami
1972 | 14 min | B/W | Digital

“Famous for its non-narrative approach and its open ending, this story of a schoolboy who is dismissed from the classroom after breaking a window presages not only The Traveller, but also Mohammad-Ali Talebi’s film Willow and Wind, scripted by Kiarostami” – Ehsan Khoshbakht

Part of our Abbas Kiarostami season