Contemporary Iranian Cinema
Screening Dates
  • September 7, 2020 8:20
  • September 9, 2020 6:00
  • September 13, 2020 3:30

A stunning Iranian-style riff on The French Connection … Saeed Roustayi’s tense, well-acted thriller takes the genre to another level.”

Peter Debruge, Variety

A smart Iranian thriller filled with superb performances, the second feature of writer-director Saeed Roustayi has earned rave reviews around the world and broken box-office records at home (it’s the highest-grossing non-comedy in the history of Iranian cinema). Roustayi’s edgy film is set against Iran’s illegal drug trade. Payman Maadi, known for his role in Asghar Farhadi’s A Separation, plays a beleaguered good-bad cop determined to bring down a prominent drug lord. Navid Mohammadzadeh (Lantouri; No Date, No Signature) shines in the latter role. The high-octane plot delivers the requisite action and suspense, while the film also casts a clear-eyed, critical look at serious social problems and criminal-justice dysfunction in the Islamic Republic. The title refers to the estimated 6.5 million citizens with drug addictions in Iran (a country that imposes the death penalty for dealing narcotics). Just 6.5 won Best Director and Best Actor (Mohammadzadeh) honours at last year’s Tokyo IFF.

A thrilling watch … It won the audience award at Iran’s national film festival, and it isn’t hard to see why.”

Deborah Young, Hollywood Reporter

Supremely impressive … A gripping crime thriller that also makes a sharp political statement.”

Sarah Ward, Screen Daily