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The Salesman (Forushande)

Iranian writer-director Asghar Farhadi won this year's Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Feature for this slow-burning thriller and refused to attend the ceremony to collect his statuette as a political statement against Donald Trump's controversial immigration policy. The Salesman is far less provocative, centred on married couple Emad (Shahab Hosseini) and Rana (Taraneh Alidoosti), who are actors in rehearsal for a new staging of Arthur Miller's Death Of A Salesman. One night, they are forced to evacuate their apartment block when the building becomes unsafe and threatens to collapse. With the help of fellow actor Babak (Babak Karimi), Emad and Rana find alternative accommodation in a top-floor flat that was vacated in a hurry by the previous female tenant. It transpires that this woman was a prostitute, who may have had strained relationships with some of her customers. Shortly after they move in, Rana is attacked in the bathroom and is rushed to hospital. She returns home deeply shaken, unable to remember the face of her assailant and unwilling to file a police report to relive the nightmare. Emad becomes consumed with a desire to unmask the perpetrator and he turns detective to find and then punish his wife's attacker. This revenge mission puts intolerable strain on the marriage and the couple struggles to escape reality and perform on stage each night.