Over on the Criterion Channel, we’ve premiered our latest installment of Observations on Film Art, an original program that examines elements of cinematic style and how great filmmakers utilize them in their work. Hosted by film-studies scholar Kristin Thompson, this new episode centers on the late Iranian auteur Abbas Kiarostami and his haunting depictions of landscapes. In the above excerpt, Thompson highlights Where Is My Friend’s House? (1987) and Taste of Cherry (1997), two masterpieces now available to stream on the Channel, to demonstrate how the director’s prominent use of the deserts, mountains, and countryside of Iran heightens the lyrical qualities of his sparse, winding narratives.
A Swoon-Worthy Tribute to a Great Hollywood Romanticist
Critic Farran Smith Nehme introduces the underappreciated films of Frank Borzage, one of golden-age Hollywood’s underrated masters of melodrama.
In the Shadow of the Dictator: A Conversation with George Sikharulidze
In his short film Fatherland, the Georgian director pays a visit to Stalin’s birthplace to explore the townspeople’s nostalgia for their long-departed leader.