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Holy Spider

1hr 56mins
Directed by
Ali Abbasi
Zar Amir Ebrahimi,
Mehdi Bajestani
Film Language
in Persian with English subtitles


Opens on
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Female journalist Rahimi (Zar Amir Ebrahimi) travels to the Iranian holy city of Mashhad to investigate a serial killer who believes he is doing the work of God, cleansing the streets of sinners by murdering sex workers.

As the body count mounts, and Rahimi draws closer to exposing his crimes, the opportunity for justice grows harder to attain as the ‘Spider Killer’ is embraced by many as a hero. Based on the horrific true story of serial killer Saeed Hanaei, acclaimed writer-director Ali Abbasi (Border) unveils a gripping crime thriller, and a daring indictment of a society in which rough justice is routinely a fact of life.

Related Events

Event type
Post-Film Q&A

Panorama: Holy Spider

After the screening, join us for a discussion with artist, educator and activist Neda Moridpour; UMASS Dartmouth Professor Pamela Karimi; and others TBA. "My intention was not to make a serial killer movie. I wanted to make a movie about a serial killer society. It is about the deep-rooted misogyny within Iranian society, which is not specifically religious or political but cultural." — Filmmaker Ali Abbasi

Sunday, December 18

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