Asghar Farhadi: Life and Cinema
by Tina Hassannia
The release of A Separation (2011) was a milestone for Asghar Farhadi: After winning a slew of awards, including Iran’s first Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, Farhadi was internationally celebrated as a new face in Iranian cinema. While Farhadi continues to establish himself as an auteur of suspenseful melodrama (his first international production, The Past, was released in 2013), little has been written in Western film criticism about the director’s filmography, which dates back to the early 2000s. In Asghar Farhadi: Life and Cinema, Tina Hassannia traces Farhadi’s origins as an Iranian scriptwriter and director and provides contextual analyses for each of his six feature films, which also include Dancing in the Dust, The Beautiful City, Fireworks Wednesday and About Elly. The book also include an exclusive, in-depth interview with the filmmaker about his work. In detailing Farhadi’s cinematic influences and the history of the Iranian melodrama, Hassannia provides the first English introduction to this new Iranian master.
“Tina Hassania’s perceptive, eloquent critical examination of Asghar Farhadi’s work traces his thematic and artistic development over six feature films in a way that illuminates the writer-director’s originality and engagement with crucial social and human issues in both Iran and the modern world. It’s a rich, thought-provoking study.” – Godfrey Cheshire
Tina Hassannia is a film critic and writer. Her work has appeared in The Guardian, The Globe and Mail, Slant Magazine, Reverse Shot, Maisonneuve, Guernica, Little White Lies, Keyframe, Grolsch Film Works, and others. She is the co-host of Hello Cinema, a podcast dedicated to Iranian cinema. She was born in Tehran and lives in Toronto, Canada. You can find her online at tinahassannia.com.