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Like Someone in Love – Kiarostami in Japan

The inspiration for this film “ライク・サムワン・イン・ラブ” which is said to be successor to Certified Copy, came from one of Kiarostami’s visits to Japan (more below). Certified Copy is also the only other film Kiarostami has made outside of Iran. Like Someone in Love was shot in Japan and is a French-Japanese production.

The film, which borders on an indecent proposal, had the production title The End which was also the initial name of the movie.

When Abbas Kiarostami was in Tokyo 17 or 18 years ago, he was driving through the business district late at night when he saw a young girl dressed as a bride on the sidewalk. This image was so powerful that it remained with him even when he went back to Iran and then through his travels until he went back to Japan. He would go back to Japan almost every other year for the promotion of his different films and events and realized that he was still looking for the same girl, the same image that he had found so striking at the time. He never saw the girl again but the reality was still there under different costumes, the same desires and longings and needs. Eventually Kiarostami turned this experience into this film.

It tells the story of a young Japanese woman who finances her studies through prostitution. Featuring a largely unknown all-Japanese cast, Kiarostami’s latest is a supine, understated production, exploring the the unlikely beginnings of a relationship between young student/part-time escort and a grandfatherly client with whom she forms an unlikely connection. Like Someone in Love competed for the Palme d’Or at Cannes.