Jafar Panahi tests the limits of his filmmaking ban with This Is Not a Film
There's a cliché in criticism that certain technically accomplished movies are "pure cinema," and in a sense, if this is not a film, it's pure filmmaking. It presents itself as a document, but its authenticity is questionable, and for a man who is banned from filmmaking, so is its legitimacy. But it is a process in action and in dialogue with itself. It is an act of defiance, and the product of an artist's self-effacing need to express himself. Whether or not this is a film, it is a profound artistic howl.
THIS IS NOT A FILM opens Fri/6 at SF Film Society Cinema.