directed by Ali Abbasi, Denmark / Germany / Sweden / France 2022, 116'
- Based on a true story and directed by Ali Abbasi, creator of the Oscar-nominated Border, this thriller references American classics of the genre by directors such as David Fincher or Martin Scorsese, at the same time uncompromisingly portraying contemporary Iran. Dark and dense like a sultry city night, Abbasi’s film premiered in competition at the Cannes Film Festival, which awarded Zar Amir Ebrahimi in Best Actress category.
- Holy Spider is a gloomy thriller about a woman who risks her life seeking the truth and challenging patriarchal conspiracy. Ebrahimi plays a journalist tracking down a serial killer of female sex workers in the holy Iranian city of Mashhad (the crimes in Mashhad really happened: sixteen women were killed). Religious leaders, the police and the media are not concealing their silent admiration for the fanatic who “cleans the streets of corruption and sin”. The protagonist is therefore not just up against a murderer, but also uniformed and high-ranking predators for whom women’s lives – including her own – have no value. The land of the Holy Spider is like a sticky web set up for women.