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Created by Matt Zoller Seitz
Directed by Judith Carter
“If you only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking.”
Signed by Godfrey Cheshire (author) and Matt Zoller Seitz (introduction)
In the Time of Kiarostami is a compilation of work by Godfrey Cheshire, the preeminent American critic and scholar on Iranian cinema, and one of only a handful who has become a welcome presence in Iran and become friends with some of its most prominent and influential filmmakers. Cheshire was friends with Kiarostami during the last two decades of his life—he even took the photo on the cover of the book—and was instrumental in helping build a receptive American audience for Kiarostami's work, as well as for films by such contemporaries as Jafar Panahi, Mohsen Mahkmalbaf, and Majid Majidi. Mixing reportage, film festival coverage, political/cultural commentary on American attitudes towards the mideast, and reviews of significant works, it's a must-read for devotees of one of the greatest contributions to world cinema that any individual country has made.
ABOUT THE BOOK
“I admire Godfrey for his strong support of Iranian cinema and his efforts to introduce Iranian films to American audiences. Although movies are shown by distributors and exhibitors, it’s really the critics who bring the audience. Godfrey’s reviews also help us in Iran by providing critical support against those who attempt to suppress us and keep us from working.”—Jafar Panahi, filmmaker
“So impressed by his first encounters with contemporary Iranian films, Godfrey Cheshire decided to do a deep dive into Iranian literature, art and society, not to mention film history. The happy result is this book, displaying an incredible range of knowledge about what is the most remarkable film movement of the past decades, while offering a deep exploration of both this cinema’s deep roots as well as its celebrated achievements.”—Richard Pena, Professor of Film and Media Studies, Columbia University
“Godfrey Cheshire has been the preeminent American critic on Iranian cinema for decades. With rare access to master filmmakers, Cheshire weaves together rich, personal stories, with history, culture and his brilliant insights. His passion is infectious. This is his definitive book.”—Ramin Bahrani, Oscar-nominated filmmaker
“What’s most remarkable about this volume is its transparency. Throughout, in new, rewritten and republished pieces, you can see Godfrey’s questing and questioning mind latching onto a subject for which he has a deep affinity, learning as much as he can about it—by pondering the works themselves, talking to their creators, and absorbing the culture that birthed the scene—and then figuring out a way to transmit his enthusiasm to the widest American audience possible.”—Matt Zoller Seitz
MZS.Press is the online arts bookstore founded by author, critic, and filmmaker Matt Zoller Seitz and directed by Judith Carter. It offers new, used, signed, collectible, and rare books on film, TV, music, photography, and the visual arts. The store was launched in 2019 on a different platform and has expanded to incorporate arts books published by MZSPress's private imprint: titles currently include Seitz's The Deadwood Bible: A Lie Agreed Upon and Dreams of Deadwood, about the HBO Western, and Walter Chaw's A Walter Hill Film.
Our deepest wish is to promote, encourage, and distribute work by small presses, academic presses, and individuals. Extraordinary work tends to get swallowed up on giant platforms like Amazon and Barnes & Noble. The store's inventory of nearly 1000 volumes is currently in the process of being reconstructed after its relocation from Cincinnati, Ohio, to Dallas, Texas. The titles featured here are personally selected by a group of curators and advisors, including Seitz, Carter, and an array of critics, artists, journalists, educators, publishers, and arts mavens who are known for their ability to suss out what Seitz's jazz musician dad liked to call "the good sh*t."
"That's why her hair is so big. It's full of secrets."
Matt Zoller Seitz
Critic, Author, Filmmaker, MZS Press Creator
Matt Zoller Seitz is the Editor at Large and film critic of RogerEbert.com; a staff writer for New York Magazine and Vulture.com, and a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in criticism. His writing on film and TV has appeared in Sight and Sound, The New York Times, Salon.com, The New Republic and Rolling Stone. Seitz is the founder and original editor of the influential film blog The House Next Door, now a part of Slant Magazine.
Seitz has written, narrated, edited or produced over a hundred hours’ worth of video essays about cinema history and style for The Museum of the Moving Image, Salon.com and Vulture, among other outlets. His five-part 2009 video essay Wes Anderson: The Substance of Style was spun off into the hardcover book The Wes Anderson Collection. This book and its follow-up, The Wes Anderson Collection: Grand Budapest Hotel were New York Times bestsellers.
Other Seitz books include the New York Times bestellers The Sopranos Sessions and Mad Men Carousel; TV (The Book), The Deadwood Bible: A Lie Agreed Upon, and the forthcoming The Wes Anderson Collection: The French Dispatch. He is also an interviewer, moderator, and film programmer who has curated and hosted film and TV presentations for the Museum of the Moving Image, IFC Center, San Francisco's Roxie Cinema, and other venues. He is currently working on a memoir about his marriages and a feature-length documentary about his father, jazz musician and composer Dave Zoller.
His hobbies include exotic dancing, moonwalking, and affixing masking tape labels to every food item in the refrigerator, including eggs. He has the attention span of a gnat.