"Kiarostami represents the highest level of artistry in the cinema." —Martin Scorsese
24 Frames is a contemplative photo-film essay started by filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami and, after his death in 2016, completed by his son Ahmad. The film comprises short vignettes based on photographs Abbas Kiarostami took over 40 years.
Upon the film’s premiere at Cannes, Barbara Scharres wrote on rogerebert.com: “These sequences are breathtaking in the beauty of the photography, and startling in the acuteness and vibrant curiosity of the vision. Each is a mini-drama evolving in its own time. Kiarostami’s love of snowy landscapes, the sea, the forces of nature, and his fascination with the unsentimental drama of the animal world bring home the intelligence and patient vision of the artist behind the camera.”
Houston’s Iranian Film Festival has shown many Kiarostami films, from the groundbreaking early feature Where Is the Friend’s Home? to international successes such as Through the Olive Trees, Taste of Cherry, The Wind Will Carry Us, and Certified Copy.
“24 Frames is an exquisite reverie on scenes from nature. Through still, but precise frames, and aided by subtle staging or effects, he captures the haunting, haiku-like poetry of nature, its beauty, amorousness and brutality. The play with the double meaning of ‘frame’ reflects his profound mediation on the cinematic form.” —Variety
"From my very first movie, what was my concentration, my inspiration, was that I didn’t want to narrate something. I didn’t want to tell a story. I wanted to show something; I wanted for them to make their own story from what they were seeing. My films have been progressing toward a certain kind of minimalism, even though it was never intended. Elements that can be eliminated have been eliminated. This was pointed out to me by somebody who referred to the paintings of Rembrandt and his use of light: some elements are highlighted while others are obscured or even pushed back into the dark. And it’s something that we do—we bring out elements that we want to emphasize. I’m not claiming or denying that I have done such a thing, but I do believe in Bresson’s method of creation through omission, not through addition. A work of art doesn’t exist outside the perception of the audience." - Abbas Kiarostami
• Want to see more of the Iranian Film Festival? Rice Cinema and Asia Society Texas Center also host screenings.