Dir. Abbas Kiarostami, Iran, 1987, 87 minutes
The first in Abbas Kiarostami’s sublime, interlacing trilogy of films set in the northern Iranian village of Koker, Where is the Friend’s House? takes a premise of fable-like simplicity—a boy searches for the home of his classmate whose school notebook he has accidentally taken—and transforms this simple narrative into a miraculous, child’s-eye adventure of the everyday. As the young hero zigzags determinedly across two towns aided (and sometimes misdirected) by those he encounters, his quest becomes both a revealing portrait of Iranian society in all its richness and complexity and a touching parable about the meaning of personal responsibility. Shot through with all the wonder, beauty, tension, and mystery one day can contain, Where is the Friend’s House? established Kiarostami’s reputation as one cinema’s most sensitive and profound humanists. The film was selected by artist Farah Al Qasimi as an accompaniment to Everywhere there is splendor her newly commissioned, photo-based installation across CAM’s Project Wall. She selected the film because it “speaks to the way that children form their own moral codes and senses of responsibility in a beautiful and sensitive way.”
Co-presented with the Cinema St. Louis as part of the 30th Annual Whitaker St. Louis International Film Festival.