Love and Authenticity in Abbas Kiarostami’s Certified Copy

A love story of startling formal and psychological complexity, Abbas Kiarostami’s 2010 Certified Copy—the late master’s first dramatic feature made outside his native Iran—stars Juliette Binoche and English opera singer William Shimell as an antique dealer and a writer, who meet at a lecture and embark on an excursion to a quaint Tuscan village. What at first appears to be the tale of two strangers soon transforms into an inquiry on the elusiveness of authenticity in both art and life.

This riveting romantic puzzle premieres today on the Criterion Channel along with all the supplemental features from our edition, including a behind-the-scenes documentary; Kiarostami’s rarely seen The Report (1977), a key thematic precursor to Certified Copy; and an interview with the director, conducted in 2012 in Paris. In the below clip from that interview, Kiarostami talks about the film’s philosophical concern with the concept of originality, the value it confers on the world around us, and the deceptive role it plays in our experience of falling in love.

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