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A HERO (2021, IRN) Movie review, plot, trailer

A Hero - Official Trailer | Prime Video

After a short trip to Spain where he shot “Everybody Knows,” Ashgar Farhadi returned to Iran and shot another exceptional combination of thriller, drama, and even comedy that can stand side by side with his two best films. “A Separation” and “The Salesman” won Oscars for Best Foreign Language Film, “A Hero” probably won’t, but this is also a great film in which it again superbly dissects Iranian society, but also shows how many people from all over the world same. This is a film in which we see how seemingly small lies can turn into a huge problem, and “Hero” is also a great satire and critique of a hypocritical society to which the impression is usually more important than reality.

For this film, Farhadi has already won the Grand Jury Prize at Cannes, was nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Film Outside of the English-speaking World, and “A Hero” was shot in his distinctive, typical style. It’s actually a story about the average Iranian people and the almost daily problems that individuals face, a film that reminds us once again how different our cultures are, but just as likely people from all over the world are the same. That hero from the title of the film is Rahim (the extraordinary Amir Jadidi), the divorced father of a boy who stutters and he is released from prison for the weekend. Rahim ended up behind bars because he did not repay the debt, and according to Iranian law, he should be in prison until he agrees with the man who once lent him money on the repayment dynamics.

And immediately after his short release, Rahim will have the opportunity to solve his problems. A woman with whom he is in a secret relationship at the bus station found a purse with gold coins whose value should be enough to cover at least half of the debt. But the decline in the value of gold and the fact that it will get less money than expected is only the first of the problems. Another and much bigger problem is that Rahim’s creditor, also his ex-brother-in-law or his ex-wife’s brother, does not want to hear about the partial repayment of the debt he has been waiting for for three years. He wants everything at once and does not hide at all that he despises Rahim who, he claims, has caused his family unprecedented shame. And then, just like Baldrick in Black Snake, Rahim and his sweetheart will come up with a cunning plan!

They will decide to find the right owner of the bag and pick up at least some prize. But instead of a reward, Rahim will receive attention he did not expect at all. He will become an overnight hero, a great honest man who gave up significant money to do the right thing. There will be TV stations that will record reports about him, about a man to the throat in debt who is still honest and who should be an example to others. Humanitarian organizations will start organizing actions for him, he will become a hero of the nation, but his former brother-in-law and creditor is convinced that the whole story stinks from the beginning and that it cannot be the way Rahima presents himself as he knows him as a cheater and is sure people don’t change.

The situation will be completely out of control, and although he realized that he was rolling his shit and wants to get out of it as soon as possible and painlessly, he will reluctantly realize that the key is the impression he leaves on the public. That it is completely irrelevant what really happened and whether the story he released is a reality, a lie or a combination of both, but it is much more important whether people believe him and what impression he leaves. It offers “A Hero” another great insight into Iranian society, culture and everyday life there, and the main greatness of this one, just like Farhadi’s previous films, is that it is a universal theme. Which shows how society probably works almost the same in all parts of the world on the same situations and it’s a story that could almost literally be crossed out anywhere.

From the beginning to the end of this great film, we will actually ask ourselves whether he is really a hero or a cheater or maybe both? Or is it none of that, but a man who acted the way most people might act in his situation and a man who tried to turn the bad situation he is in to his advantage? It’s a great story both about morality and about how it is a deceptive category, but also about how any society likes to turn ordinary and average people into heroes and then enjoys their trampling and their stumbles even more. With this film, Farhadi once again confirmed that he is a grandmaster of putting together layered, not at all simple, but in fact so real and possible stories in which he completely exposes human nature and shows people as they really are. Neither good nor bad, but the ones that suit them best in certain situations. Rating 9/10.

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