Two men on a motorbike, the one on the back holding a flowerpot in a still from Close-up (1990)
Two men on a motorbike, the one on the back holding a flowerpot in a still from Close-up (1990)
Close-up (1990) Celluloid Dreams

Presented by ACMI in association with Sydney Film Festival, NFSA & Melbourne Cinémathèque


Nema-ye Nazdik

Abbas Kiarostami | Iran | 1990 | Unclassified (15+)

This event has ended and tickets are no longer available.









Thu 9 Jun - Sat 18 Jun 2022

See below for additional related events

Walking a sophisticated tightrope between documentary and fiction, Close-Up takes a bizarre crime and artfully reworks it for the big screen.

The meanings of Close-Up shift, subtly and profoundly, with every viewing; the only certainty is that its rewards are boundless.

Time Out

In the late 1980s, an ordinary man Hossein Sabzian was mistaken by an elderly woman for the famous film director Mohsen Makhmalbaf (The Cyclist, 1987). Seizing the opportunity to change his fortunes, Sabzian didn’t correct the matriarch’s error and began a relationship with her family as Makhmalbaf. On reading about this bizarre deception, Kiarostami dropped the project he was working on to bring this tale of daydreams and class division to the screen. With all the real players ‘performing’ as themselves, and Kiarostami’s cameras rolling while the judicial fate of Sabzian was in play, Close-Up pushes the bounds of production, and the effect cinema has outside the frame.

For scholar and filmmaker Mehrnaz Saeed-Vafa, “Close-up changed the entire course of Iranian cinema. It moves and challenges the audiences in every direction and in the opening scenes alone, contains the very essence of (Kiraostami’s) cinema.” For the director himself, the film is "in praise of dreams; it’s a beautiful portrayal of a human being who has reached a dead end but still has a hold on his dreams".

– Kristy Matheson

Format: DCP
Language: In Persian-Farsi with English subtitles
Source: Celluloid Dreams
Courtesy: Celluloid Dreams
Runtime: 90 min

Event duration

90 mins


Unclassified (15+)


Cinema 1, Level 2
ACMI, Fed Square

How to get there


Not an ACMI Member yet?

Experience ACMI in the very best way. Get a range of discounts and invitations to exclusive previews.


More films by Abbas Kiarostami

There are no upcoming related events at this time.

Don't miss Melbourne Cinémathèque's program (8–22 Jun)

ACMI building at night - photograph by Shannon McGrath

Plan your visit

COVIDSafe visitor guidelines, information on accessibility, amenities, transport, dining options and more.

Start planning
Potato Bread at Hero ACMI

Looking for dining options?

Our restaurant, cafe and bar features a seasonally driven menu developed by acclaimed Melbourne chef, Karen Martini.


We’re taking part in the Victorian Entertainment Program

This means you can claim back 25% of your ticket purchase (up to $125) when you spend $40 or more.  ​

Just keep your receipt and apply for your rebate at the Victorian Entertainment Program website.

Act fast! The program will close once funds are exhausted.

Wonderland Late Nights Honcho - Field Carr.jpg

You might also like