LAFF Review: Atomic Heart

LAFF Review: Atomic Heart

directed by Ali Ahmadzadeh

starring Mohammad Reza Golzar, Taraneh Alidoosti, Mehrdad Sedighian

**½ out of 4 stars
Not completely sure what to say about this unusual neo-noir from Iran. It’s the strangest film at this year’s LA Film Fest for reasons other than the dream-like state it delivers. The film opens on Arineh and Nobahar as they come out of a late-night party, only to drive on to the next one, before a sudden accident causes them to go on a night-long odyssey, running into a series of bizarre characters and events along the way. As the characters exchange long conversations on Iranian politics and culture, you might get a bit lost if you don’t know anything about Iran’s history. And director Ali Ahmadzadeh has a hard time delivering on some of the suspense he tries to build, especially in a climatic tracking shot as Arineh conjoins with the real and parallel. But Ahmadzadeh and cinematographer Ashkan Ashkani create a trippy world to get lost in for sure. As Arineh and Nobahar go deeper down the dark rabbit hole, the images and humorous banter between the two talented actresses keeps you riveted. I’d say unless you are able to always connect with what the characters are talking about, you’re better off seeing this baby stoned. The look of it will get to you.

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