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Review: Circumstance

Schoolgirls in hijabs
By ANN LEWINSON  |  September 6, 2011
3.0 3.0 Stars

begins like an early Kiarostami film, but with schoolgirls in hijabs instead of schoolboys in sweaters. One slips an origami crane to another. "Your character is questionable," chides the headmistress. She doesn't know the half of it. Atafeh (Nikohl Boosheri) and Shireen (Sarah Kazemy) are in love, and in Iran homosexuality is a capital crime. Atafeh's prosperous parents have made their home a secular haven. But when her brother (Reza Sixo Safai) returns from rehab a born-again Muslim and is drawn to Shireen, he does what any son would do in a film made by a protégé of Atom Egoyan — he wires the house with cameras. Like Persepolis and No One Knows About Persian Cats, Maryam Keshavarz's debut sometimes reduces the struggle against repression to the fight for the right to party. But seen after the Mideast youthquake, Circumstance reveals what the girls might have been up to while the boys were in the streets — a revolution that will only be televised on closed-circuit.

  Topics: Reviews , Middle East, Boston, Rehab,  More more >
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