Operation 747 [Mohammad Esmaeili, Iran, 2017]

Two veterans attempt to expose a fraudulent city council candidate, while stuck in a sanatorium whose staff seem to conspire against them. It is a premise that presents a minefield of potential clichés. Think back to other thrillers. Remember the slim-fit suits, the over-stylised shootouts, the antagonist’s droning monologues that seemed like they would never end? None of these appear in Operation 747. Instead, through astute direction and measured performances, writer-director Mohammad Esmaeili has created a surprisingly refreshing and tense thriller.