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There Is No Evil(شیطان وجود ندارد)

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭   Read critic reviews

Germany, Iran, Czech Republic

2020

2h 31m

Director Mohammad Rasoulof

Starring Mahtab Servati, Shaghayegh Shourian, Baran Rasoulof, Darya Moghbeli

Genre Drama

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Four stories about military men tasked with the execution of another human being. The focus is on the psychological impact of the death penalty on both the perpetrator and victim, adressing the moral strength inherent to any resistance to authoritarian methods put forth by the Iranian government.

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WHAT ARE CRITICS SAYING?

60

The Hollywood Reporter by Deborah Young

Though the message comes across loud and clear, the four tales suffer from being narratively uneven, making the film’s two-and-a-half-hour running time seem long indeed.
91

The Film Stage by Ed Frankl

Not since A Short Film About Killing has a filmmaker produced such a thrilling case against capital punishment, an enraging, enthralling, enduring testament to the oppressed.
91

IndieWire by Eric Kohn

The movie provokes the wonder and terror of what it means to live in a world where every resolution brings new questions, and the prospects that a happy ending might carry the greatest risk of all.
90

Variety by Peter Debruge

There Is No Evil comes across as four films for the price of one, none of its segments anemic, and each contributing fresh insights to the paradoxes of capital punishment in Iran.
90

Los Angeles Times by Robert Abele

When juxtaposed against a history of Iranian cinema that has often relied on child-centric allegory and non-specific narrative to make its societal critiques, There Is No Evil practically blisters with the intensity of specifically living in Iran as it exists now, as a state once believed to carry out the most executions of any country outside China.
78

Austin Chronicle by Steve Davis

The Iranian production There is No Evil (Persian title: Satan Doesn’t Exist) may not revive the portmanteau film to its former glory (the comic 1963 Italian Oscar-winning trilogy Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow being a stellar example), but it’s a comparatively solid quartet of short films that critically examine the country’s dehumanizing system of capital punishment, putting a human face on the citizen-executioner asked to carry out the all-too-frequently enacted death penalty.

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