Nader’s refusal to allow his wife Simin and their daughter to leave Iran on account of his father’s failing health initiates a complicated series of events as Simin tries unsuccessfully to divorce him. He hires a young woman named Razieh to look after his father, but things go wrong.
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Every once in a while, these characters seem to crash against each other, and the film explodes along with them — gaining urgency, power, danger as it moves relentlessly along, never quite allowing you to see where it might go next.