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Iran 2018. Dir: Mani Haghighi. 108 min. DCP

A serial killer is beheading Iran’s best filmmakers — and blacklisted director Hasan Kasmai, who has a high opinion of himself, is starting to take umbrage! Why hasn’t he been targeted yet? Debuted at the Berlin festival this year, the latest from writer-director Mani Haghighi (A Dragon Arrives!) is a flamboyant, farcical black comedy satirizing artistic ego, gender relations, government censorship, and social-media culture. Hasan Majuni plays pompous, petulant Hasan, now reduced to directing bug-spray ads. Leila Hatami (star of Asghar Farhadi’s A Separation) is his fave actress and mistress Shiva, who’s about to make a movie with Hasan’s biggest rival. Haghighi’s delirious film opens with the murder of Haghighi himself. Cinematographer Mahmoud Kalari also shot A Separation. “A fizzy Day-Glo meta-comedy ... this blizzard of oddity marks Haghighi out as the joker in the Iranian auteur pack, and every gang needs a wildcard” (Jessica Kiang, Variety).