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Circumstance (2011)

Nikohl Boosheri , Sarah Kazemy , Maryam Keshavarz  |  R |  DVD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)

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Circumstance + Kiss Me + A Perfect Ending
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Product Details

  • Actors: Nikohl Boosheri, Sarah Kazemy, Reza Sixo Safai, Soheil Parsa, Nasrin Pakkho
  • Directors: Maryam Keshavarz
  • Writers: Maryam Keshavarz
  • Producers: Maryam Keshavarz, Karin Chien, Melissa Lee, Antonin Dedet
  • Format: AC-3, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Lions Gate
  • DVD Release Date: December 13, 2011
  • Run Time: 107 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B005Q4CLKW
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #45,643 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Circumstance" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Winner of the 2011 Sundance Film Festival Audience Award, CIRCUMSTANCE is a provocative coming-of-age story that cracks open the hidden, underground world of Iranian youth culture filled with sex, drugs and defiance. From newcomer Maryam Keshavarz, this suspenseful tale of love and defiance unfolds as a wealthy family struggles to contain their teenage daughter’s growing sexual rebellion and her brother’s dangerous obsession.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
38 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I loved this movie. :) December 10, 2011
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Dear Current Reader,

This movie truly shows the love between two women. These actresses truly show the love between their two characters. This movie is about the freedom to be yourself, to express yourself as an individual. This is truly difficult in Iran today, but especially with the current Iranian girls and boys. It is a message that whereever you live, you have the right to be who you choose to be and who you want to fall in love with.

The story of these two girls, it just carries me away. I'm truly impressed by the story from beginning to end. I agree with my follow reviewer that the film is organized, deep and very sensual.
I love this story.

My only wish was that these two in the end would have been together, I was extremely upset when in the end they didn't end up together.

However, this movie expresses an overall message-that even though it may be difficult to be yourself, you should not let that stop you from being who you are, and who you love.
I loved this movie and I hope that you all check it out.

Sending my love-and to all those who are having trouble coming out or having a hard time being yourself-It gets better! trust me. It took me a long time to come out to my parents, but in the end they accepted me for who I was and I will be forever grateful! I send my love to all of you! <3
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32 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gorgeous film, painfully real December 13, 2011
This was a beautifully filmed piece of art. Each scene was gorgeous to watch, and the unfolding love between these two women was portrayed in a realistic way. The story was not only moving but the film as a whole touches on extremely important political and social issues in Persian culture. Yet, it also transcends Persian culture as the theme of patriarchy is relevant everywhere. Heartbreaking and relevant - a must-see.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Visually Stunning August 24, 2011
Visually stunning--- I meant the two lead actresses. I think this movie would have a lot of mainstream appeal if only it had the commercial clout to back it up. Definitely better than the boring and pretentious, "The Kids Are Alright." The beautifully shot Circumstance depicts the story of the forbidden love between two teenage girls in contemporary Tehran, the beautiful and privileged Atafeh (Nikohl Boosheri) and the orphaned Shireen (Sarah Kazemy) and their struggle to overcome the societal pressures encroaching on their personal desires. Their journey of sexual rebellion in the underground party scene leads to a series of twists and turns that eventually lands Shireen in prison where she is coerced into marriage with Atafeh's creepy brother, Mehran (Reza Sixo Safai)...

I was able to catch the first Canadian premiere of this movie at the Inside Out film festival in Toronto. I can't wait for the DVD to come out since it seems I can't find any screening of it in my local theatres.

Consequently, I've also been scouring the online reviews of this movie. So far the verdict is a little disappointing, but I think the critics are being too harsh, too snobby, too finicky, and overly critical. I know that's their jobs; however, I really don't believe any one of them has given any substantial reason for their tepid reviews. I will not waste your time going through them one by one but my conclusion is that critics barely know what they're talking about.

Forget the critics! Go watch and enjoy this movie! (if you can, it's currently being screened at select cities in the U.S.)

And please, someone at Amazon, get an actual poster of the film for the cover!! I don't know whose face that is!!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Richly satisfying January 4, 2012
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Maryam Keshavarz is maturing as a filmmaker, and this film demonstrates the rich story-telling tradition within which she is working. Although the film's box screams "sex", there is so much more to this than just two girls getting it on. Iran has a great deal of conflict between and within generations about what to do with music and singing by women, and this film portrays that complexity beautifully, with a story that is not polemical. Iran has a rich music culture, both "traditional" and "modern", and one can begin to see here some of the problems and intersections.

Superb film that is likely to be better each time you watch it.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Transgression of boundries in Iranian movies September 20, 2011
This movie is absolutely stunning on many fronts. Director Maryam Keshavarz surprises the audience by presenting a beautiful, touching and unpredictable love story involving two lesbian youngsters who have to overcome challenges emanated from traditional family values and a jealous brother to be together. Beside its boldness and courage, the movie accentuates lesibianism which adds a new dimension to Iranian cinema. The acting is phenomenal and the cinematography is amazing. Don't miss it!
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just Love it !! December 5, 2011
It's about human rights and freedom of expression in Iran today but especially in the current Iranian girls & boys, therefore a universal message.
I've all been carried away by this story from the beginning until the end. These girls are very talented. This film is very well organized, deep and very sensual.
I must say, Maryam is a genius director !!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
By P
Format:Amazon Instant Video
There have been few movies in my lifetime that have had such a profound affect on me as Circumstance. The movie ended and my heart was heavy. I could not sleep. I would be sick to have to sit at the same table as my brother and parents knowing his wedding night was to the woman I love and imagining what he did to her the night before. The correlations to a third world country and the "progressive" United States were absolutely terrifying. Other than not having to fear a political official performing a gynecological exam on me to see if my hymen was still in tact, we are not dissimilar. Gays to this day do not walk hand in hand comfortably on our streets. We do not have the same equalities that heterosexuals enjoy with marriage to protect our property, our children, our work, or when we are sick and cannot visit our partners. Those considered minorities have such privileges. In some sense, our pets have more regard and more protections than the gay community. We forget that we too have cameras prevalent in our cities and in everyone's hand to ensure that nothing goes unnoticed. We worry about politicians taking Planned Parenthood away from women even today. The discussion of how a woman uses her own body is still in the hands of politicians. We are not very different at all. A must see.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars 4stars and only4
i give this film 4 stars because this movie was relatable, tender sweet educational and moving but only 4 because it had a sad ending
Published 11 days ago by Kristina hatcher
3.0 out of 5 stars Subtle Beauty
I liked this. I didn't think it was a super amazing film, but it was worth watching. My favorite parts were the subtle moments. Read more
Published 1 month ago by M. DiBiase
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing
Probably the best Iranian film made after the revolution of 1979. Unlike other films that never touch on the social issues and focus on children films etc. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Blue Bell
5.0 out of 5 stars loved it
I loved the movie. I just wanted them to end up together. They were so right together but it shows how cultural differences are in other countries.
Published 2 months ago by Terri Shepherd
1.0 out of 5 stars lame
this movie is depressing and lame. dont even waste your dolla dollas, or you will regret it like a virgin on prom night
Published 3 months ago by Alisha Salazar
5.0 out of 5 stars Favorite movie.
This is the most amazing movie I have ever seen. It is a beautiful story of how love overcomes suppression, but is also subject to cultural demands.
Published 4 months ago by Franchesca Montoya
4.0 out of 5 stars sexy,classy
good movie overall... but I did expect more lesbian scenes. two beautiful women and not enough sences of them together.
Published 5 months ago by chinkeyes
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Movie
Interesting story and very powerful characters, not the ending I expected but still love the movie and the settle of the drama
Published 6 months ago by Ag
3.0 out of 5 stars OK
Was not too bad. Would recommend as a film to watch but not to get excited about. Cant always go on critics views, eh.
Published 6 months ago by ron james
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully Executed
A reminder that freedom is just a fantasy for most of the world...excellent message at its core. Beautifully done! Afareen!
Published 7 months ago by Mona Entezari
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