Senior writer Clint Worthington reviews “The Rider” on Consequence of Sound


In Abbas Kiarostami’s arresting 1990 drama Close-Up, the director created a half-documentary, half-dramatized account of Hossein Sabzian’s attempted impersonation of Iranian director Mohsen Makhmalbaf, combining real footage of Sabzian’s trial with reenactments of true-life events starring the people who were really involved. It’s a transcendent blending of fiction and fact, a compelling drama in constant negotiation with the various layers of artifice at play in telling its true story. The RiderChloe Zhao’s heart-stopping new drama, plays with authenticity in a similar way, leading to one of the most beautiful, poetic films of the year.


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