Global Lens Film Series: 'Modest Reception'
Directed by Mani Haghighi Iran, 2012, 100 minutes. In Farsi with English subtitles.
Something like Bonnie and Clyde in reverse, Leila and Kaveh are a mysterious pair of urban sophisticates from Tehran who travel the countryside in their Lexus coupe pushing big bags of money on the indigent. This turns out to be harder than it sounds and fascinating to watch, in ways alternately hilarious and alarming, as the cagey couple come up with increasingly brazen stratagems to place large sums of cash in the hands of the wary, proud or indifferent.
Will they push things too far? Are they losing sight of their mission? What exactly is their mission anyway?
Led by two riveting performances from Taraneh Alidoosti and writer-director Mani Haghighi — and featuring a wonderful supporting cast of stoic individuals spread across a gorgeous but harsh, war-scarred mountain landscape — Modest Reception unfurls its quirky story with quiet and unexpected force, amid intriguingly subtle themes of power, privilege and corruption.
Find about more screenings of Modest Reception and other films in the Global Lens Film Series.