Plenty of films, indeed much of modern art and poetry, has sought beauty in apparent hideousness. At least since Baudelaire fondly remembered a romantic stroll among the graceful swarm of putrid maggots inside “that superb cadaver / blossom[ing] like a flower,” it’s been a constant theme.
In Taste of Cherry, Abbas Kiarostami’s 1997 Palme d’Or winner at Cannes, we almost never stop moving. It is a film about a man whose life has crept to a halt, filmed in ceaseless motion.
There is almost no way to talk about Taste of Cherry, about its most resonant aspects, without what our generation has termed “spoilers.” There are spoilers here.