Past Event
Visual and Dramatic Arts
Saturday, February 1
Six Selected Kiarostami Shorts

About the Event

This screening presents six selected films from Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami as part of the ongoing Iranian Film Festival. 

Admission $5 for general public, free for all students and Rice affiliates.


Directed by Abbas Kiarostami

(Iran, 11 min, 1972)

Disciplined at school for breaking a window, a boy joins throngs of his schoolmates as they make a cacophonous exit into Tehran’s streets. He then briefly joins an impromptu soccer game but disrupts it by stealing the ball and running away, and ends up drifting aimlessly along a busy highway. Free of dialogue but using nonsynchronous concrete sound throughout, this moody film shows Kiarostami expanding his visual vocabulary with zooms and crane and helicopter shots.

How to Make Use of Leisure Time

Directed by Abbas Kiarostami

(Iran, 7 min, 1977)

Evidently the first installment in a series that didn’t continue, this instructional film shows idle twelve- and sixteen-year-old brothers learning how to improve their surroundings by painting an old door. With the narrator giving step-by-step instructions, the boys go through the processes of sanding, applying primer, and mixing different types of paint. Whatever its educational value, the film’s quiet enthusiasm for its subject reflects Kiarostami’s own interest in woodworking.

Tribute to Teachers

Directed by Abbas Kiarostami

(Iran, 20 min, 1977)

An assignment from the Ministry of Education, this documentary from the last years of the Pahlavi dynasty includes interviews with officials who predictably praise teaching as a sacred, noble, and honorable profession. The teachers who are also interviewed are less starry-eyed; one speaks of ungrateful students and the job’s poor pay. The contrasting views express Kiarostami’s interest in education while registering some of his reservations about how it is practiced.


Directed by Abbas Kiarostami

(Iran, 11 min, 1978)

Shot amid spectacular mountain scenery north of Tehran during the Iranian revolution, this whimsical road movie follows a young man trying to hitch a ride with an unwieldy tire. After being repeatedly passed, he rolls his companion down the mountain in this lyrical journey filmed far from the instability of Iran’s capital.


Directed by Abbas Kiarostami

(Iran, 23 min, 1980)

Though much of this film is a straightforward lecture about dental hygiene delivered by a dentist facing the camera, it still manages to be persuasively Kiarostami-esque in its description of young Mohammad-Reza’s life at home and school before he falls prey to tooth woes. (Kiarostami found the boy having a tooth removed, then filmed the earlier parts of the story later.) That some audiences find the film hilarious testifies to the humor that can accompany great discomfort.

Orderly or Disorderly

Directed by Abbas Kiarostami

(Iran, 15 min, 1981)

The first shot shows students descending a staircase in calm, orderly fashion, then the second details the same action as a chaotic rush. Separated by slates and Kiarostami’s voice intoning, “Sound, camera,” subsequent sequences describe the same dichotomous behavior in a schoolyard, on a school bus, and in the haphazard traffic of Tehran. Kiarostami described this as “a truly educational film,” but it plays more like a quirky philosophic aside.

Directions to Rice Cinema, Rice Media Center:
Entrance #8 via University Blvd & Stockton Drive
For specific directions from any location Google map ‘Rice Cinema’.
For parking information:
Shuttle service:
Campus maps:

Directions & Parking

Entrance #8 via University Blvd & Stockton Drive

Nearest visitor parking lots:
Moody Lot (previously known as Hess Lot)


Rice Media Center
Cinema Auditorium #100