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On-Screen

Kiarostami’s second documentary feature about education, the filmmaker himself asks the questions, probing a succession of invariably cute first- and second-graders about their home situations and the schoolwork they must do there. It emerges that many parents are illiterate. Tellingly, many kids can define punishment but not encouragement.

Shot almost entirely inside the confines of their tiny office, The Broker conveys a sense of claustrophobia that mirrors many women's situations and offers a shocking, tragicomic reminder that the fiercest agents of the patriarchy aren't always men.

Inspired by an ancient Hormoz Island myth in which people sacrifice clothes of the deceased to the sea so that the goddess Sea-Mother will cleanse their souls, Janbal takes stories told by the island’s dwellers as its starting point and playfully finds its form from there.