Wed March 8 — 7 pm
1 hr 55 min
Twenty years after a serial killer murdered 16 sex workers in Mashad, Ali Abbasi has made a fictionalised account of his capture and trial. Saeed Hanaei, nicknamed “Spider Killer” in the press, was arrested in 2001 for the murder of 16 sex workers in the northeastern city of Mashad.
Actress Zar Amir Ebrahimi won the prestigious Best Actress award at Cannes for her leading role as Rahimi, a journalist returning to her hometown to help bring the killer to justice. The film at first appears as a straightforward tale of cat-and-mouse, and good versus evil story. But upon The Spider’s capture, Rahimi is horrified to discover that he has a great deal of support from his friends and those who agree with his skewed judgment of morality.
Abbasi transforms the controversial case into both a violent, catch-the-killer thriller and a critique of his homeland’s punishing theocratical system, where women seem to always be guilty of something, even when they’re the victims of cold-blooded murder.
Award: Best Actress Award (Zar Amir Ebrahimi), Cannes 2022
Mehdi Bajestani, Zar Amir Ebrahimi, Arash Ashtiani, Forouzan Jamshidnejad, Alice Rahimi, Sara Fazilat
Country of Origin:
Persian with English subtitles