The Un Certain Regard section winner with his second film for the 2018 programme with Border, Ali Abbasi makes his first journey into the competition remarkably with only his third feature. The Tehran born Swedish filmmaker turns his focus on his homeland with Holy Spider. Starring Mehdi Bajestani playing the part of a psychopath and Zar Amir Ebrahimi playing a journalist who is all in and she places herself in danger on more than one occasion — a fair amount of what will be written up on the film is the difficult to watch first act, but it’s the loaded discourse on Iranian society that is inescapably mind blowing.
Formerly known as The Long Night, this is about a family man Saeed who decides to clean the streets – and by this we do not mean picking up garbage and using a broom. The holy Iranian city of Mashhad is a backdrop — seedy, grimy and nocturnal pockets show the man attack several innocent women — but some might differ on the idea of innocence.
Currently at the midway point of the festival, the psychologically violent number got some favorable grades with 15 critics (among our 20) giving this an average score of 3.1 There are more grades to come in — so this might fall or increase by one grade point.
Click on the grid below for a larger version and latest updates!