Through the Olive Trees

103 mins.
Directed by Abbas Kiarostami
NR
Persian with subtitles
1994

New 2K restoration from Janus Films and MK2.

Kiarostami takes metanarrative gamesmanship to masterful new heights in the final installment of the Koker Trilogy. Unfolding “behind the scenes” of AND LIFE GOES ON, this film traces the complications that arise when the romantic misfortune of one of the actors—a young man who pines for the woman cast as his wife, even though, in real life, she will have nothing to do with him—creates turmoil on set and leaves the hapless director caught in the middle.

An ineffably lovely, gentle human comedy steeped in the folkways of Iranian village life, THROUGH THE OLIVE TREES peels away layer after layer of artifice as it investigates the elusive, alchemical relationship between cinema and reality.


Shown with short TWO SOLUTIONS FOR ONE PROBLEM (dir. Abbas Kiarostami, 1975, 5 minutes).

This simple moral tale seems to prefigure WHERE IS THE FRIEND'S HOUSE?. Two young schoolboys, Dara and Nader, are friends until Dara returns Nader’s notebook torn and Nader retaliates in kind, setting off an escalating battle that leads to physical injury. In the second solution, Dara realizes his offense and repairs the notebook, preserving the peace and the friendship. The film is shot mostly in close-ups, with a narrator drolly chronicling the action.