Review: “The Past.”

Family dramas are usually light on plot. They borrow a lot from theater: a lot of quirky characters are put in the same place, with one event or discovery that’s the catalyst of what’s to follow. A good recent example is John Wells’s August: Osage County, which uses the death of a patriarch as an opportunity for bitter multi-generational histrionics. Asghar Farhadi’s The Past has little interest in typical tropes of drama or languid scenes that don’t push the story forward. Instead, the latest from the Iranian filmmaker brims with complex morality, flawed characters, and inexorably sharp plotting.

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