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Spring Showcase: Reza

Monday, April 15, 2019, 7:55 p.m.

Where: UltraStar Mission Valley at Hazard Center, 7510 Hazard Center Drive, San Diego | get directions

Cost: Not available

Age limit: Not available

Reza’s day begins by getting out of bed and dressing for work, and ends a few minutes later with the removal of his work clothes and a quick retreat back under the covers. Such is the current state of our recently divorced troglodyte, eager to get on with his life, if only his ex-wife Fati (Sahar Dowlatshahi) would let him. Ruddy-cheeked, barrel-chested, and topped with sandy blonde shingles, Reza (played by first-time writer and director Alireza Motamedi) looks like the Swede at a Woody Allen cocktail party, pinned to pay tribute to Ingmar Bergman. His presence at the center of an Iranian film initially works in his favor. But once the off-kilter spin ceases to turn, the novelty disappears and all that’s left is a complaisant bear at the center of the Academy ratio frame. There’s a running story about a dying man that, every eight minutes, acted as a reminder that there was this story about a dying man working its way through the picture. File this under, “I didn’t like it, but you might.” — Scott Marks

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