REVIEW: A HERO (2021) Three years since directing Everybody Knows


Starring Javier Bardem and Penélope Cruz, which is also a feature-length film with a story set in Spain, the Iranian director, Asghar Farhadi , has returned to tell the story of his homeland through A Hero . Also written and produced by Farhadi, A Hero tells the story of a man named Rahim ( Amir Jadidi ) who has to languish in prison due to his inability to pay his debts. His chance to pay his debts and be released from prison comes when his lover, Farkhondeh ( Sahar Goldoost), found a bag containing piles of gold coins and then handed it to Rahim. Unfortunately, the value of gold found by Farkhondeh is still far from being able to pay off Rahim’s debt. Rahim then decided to post an announcement about the discovery of the missing bag so the owner of the bag could contact him. Successful, the bag is then returned to its owner. When prison officials learned of Rahim’s noble deed, word of an inmate choosing to return valuables rather than using them for his own benefit quickly spread and made Rahim an idol throughout the country.

Like other Farhadi films, A Herodisplays a story building formed from the initial conflict that looks so simple that occurs in character figures who are so down to earth, familiar, and feel that they can be easily found in everyday life. However, just like the storytelling of other Farhadi films, the conflict in this film then turns into a series of stories with complex nuances of tragedy and a line of characters that can never be classified as characters with complete black and white moral values. This complexity is reliably and intelligently mixed by Farhadi into a moral drama presentation of uncertainty stemming from an attitude of dishonesty that will make every audience glued because their emotions are deeply stirred.

Even with the themes and colors of storytelling that have been so attached to the line of works that fill his filmography, A Hero presents Farhadi’s view of a more modern way of life – talking about actions that have become the attention of the general public in the era of the internet and social media. Through each layer of the story that continues to peel through every step and action taken by the main character, Farhadi reliably fills the heads of every audience with millions of mysteries about the meaning of truth in a time where everyone can freely voice their understanding of the meaning of the truth. Would the meaning of truth (and an act of kindness) diminish or even disappear if the majority mass did not give a similar response?

With the duration of the presentation running for 127 minutes, Farhadi never felt rushed to reach the climax of his storytelling. Slowly, but each step of the narrative is able to present a deeper emotional grip. Farhadi also received solid performance support from his acting department. At the forefront, Jadidi brilliantly brings to life a character who will be able to win everyone’s sympathy, but at the same time also brings anxiety about every decision he makes. Smart subtle appearance.

Farhadi’s touch to build conflict and then push it in an unexpected direction in A Hero is not as monumental as his achievements in About Elly (2009) or A Separation (2011). Even so, his extraordinary ability to speak with satire about life in the era of social media will still be able to invite admiration.