This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
E’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
four viewings later and I'm still captivated by Mr. Badii's slow sinking journey through the sands of time. this particular viewing, I was struck by how each passenger impacted his resolve; Badii was hesitant with the soldier, offering only oblique hints towards his suicidal intentions, but with each passing refusal to pick up the spade and cover his body, he becomes more assured in his decision to take his own life. It's only when the taxidermist waxes poetic about the beauty of life but accepts the job to help his anemic son that Badii questions his decision. ultimately, he does appear to pass away under the shadow of the cherry tree, but it's not his death that matters, it's the glimpses of humanity in all its richness and complexity that Kiarostami captures through Mr. Badii's search for a peaceful end to his life.
just thinking about kiarostami's death is still enough to bring tears to my eyes. even when his films were concerned with death, they were teeming with life. its a fleeting moment in Taste of Cherry, but I believe that Mr. Badii's conversation with the security guard about the tomb of the Imam Ali, believed to be in two different locations, is crucial as a metaphor for Badii as he relates to Kiarostami and the film itself. i won't spell it out for fear of spoiling the magic of the film, most of which lies in its simplicity, its subtly, and its ability to turn a car in the desert into a dynamic evocation of the human condition.
taste of cherry is a trembling whisper, cast adrift from a broken hourglass, carried aloft beside leaves shed from a lone cherry tree