From the May 29, 1998 Chicago Reader.. — J.R.
Taste of Cherry
Rating **** Masterpiece
Directed and written by Abbas Kiarostami
With Homayoun Ershadi, Abdolhossein Bagheri, Ali Moradi, Hossein Noori, and Ahmad Ansari.
I want to give the audience a hint of a scene. No more than that. Give them too much and they won’t contribute anything themselves. Give them just a suggestion and you get them working with you. That’s what gives the theatre meaning: when it becomes a social act. — Orson Welles, 1938
Much of what’s been called innovative in the art of movies over the past half century has at first been seen by part of the audience as boring or as representing a loss — usually because it has somehow redefined the shape and function of narrative. When Jean-Luc Godard introduced jump cuts in Breathless (1959) some viewers saw a loss in continuity; and when he got actors to spout literary quotations — which sometimes undercut the verisimilitude of his characters and plots — many thought he was opening the door to chaos. The next year Michelangelo Antonioni made the apparent heroine of L’avventura disappear about a third of the way through the picture and never explained what happened to her; the audience at Cannes, where the film premiered, responded with angry catcalls, insisting that the emperor had no clothes. Read more