No Bears

No Bears ★★★★½

More than a little dizzying; more so after reading up on the background, which is fair -- how can you separate Panahi's situation from his art when he's making movies about himself? Starring himself? I'm a sucker for some metatextual fiction, and this gave me more than enough of that.

Art at all costs. The fact that he's willing to pay the cost himself -- literally, because the man was in fact standing right there on the border -- doesn't relieve his guilt from asking others to pay the cost with him. But that self-awareness does relieve the burden of responsibility. Besides, as the village plot makes abundantly clear, the government is going to come down on him no matter what. Might as well dance.

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