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  1. Published on: 11/08/2019 03:31 PMReported by: Film Critic
    Plot: While returning to her hometown for her sister's wedding, the kidnapping of her daughter ignites dark secrets within the entire family.

    A new Asghar Farhadi feature always creates high expectations in certain circles. His films may never be flashy. But they always end up being quite impactful and gives us many strong characters with high-quality development.

    While this latest project might not be as exceptional as almost all of his previous work, this mystery drama is an entertaining feature with solid performances from a fairly large cast.

    Most definitely carrying the film is Penelope Cruz who gives a brilliant leading performance. The sadness and determination she portrays on screen elevates everything else around her. It is probably her best performance since the great Volver back in 2006.
    Javier Bardem also shine nicely, particularly towards the end. It might not be up there with the likes of No Country For Old Men, The Sea Inside or Skyfall, but his contribution was essential.
    In fact, I think the entire cast all contributed nicely and never made it feel like a two-actor show.

    The only major negative was most definitely the duration. There were plenty of scenes that could have been cut and therefore would have been made the pacing feel about more smooth and seamless. But as that's not usually Farhadi's style, then I guess it's a negative from a personal point of view.

    While it could well be Farhadi's weakest piece since his debut, it's a solid mystery drama that is pretty entertaining with a very strong leading performance.
    Cruz is definitely worth your time, the Spanish architecture and landscape is great to look at and as we don't see many mystery films these days, I would happily recommended it and I feel many will not see it as a disappointment.

    Rating: 7/10

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