The Deer ★★★★

An Iranian film unlike anything else I've seen from the country, bridging the gap between socially conscious neo-realism and gritty B-movie noir. The stink of despair and disenchantment, deriving both from the pressure of poverty and wounded masculinity, hovers over it. (The fact that even the best version currently available was taken from a scratched print aids that atmosphere; the film itself looks as wounded by life as its characters.) Behrouz Vossoughi's performance is deservedly acclaimed. His character seems worn down by something far beyond his heroin addiction.

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