Some Notes on the Iranian Minister of Foreign Affairs' Video Calling For "Mutual Respect" in Upcoming Nuclear Talks

1. It begins beautifully when, looking dapper in a beautiful suit and sunglasses, he emerges from a beautiful building to walk past a beautiful fountain.zarif

2. As Zarif strolls, we see the person who opened the door of the beautiful building for him has, strangely, neglected to close it. What are they waiting for? Screen Shot 2014-07-03 at 4.39.30 PM

3. There’s a very weird jump cut around 1:12 from a close-up to a wider shot as a sort of punctuation around his chastising the United States for eight years of sanctions: Screen Shot 2014-07-03 at 4.58.50 PM“They then opted for pressure and sanctions. For eight years.”

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“The sanctions were crippling.” (Now I’m standing in a whole new place!)

4. There’s a truly bizarre lol cut at 1:44 where, now, suddenly, Zarif is not looking at the viewer but off to the side, into the distance. Who is he talking to??

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5. For the entire four-and-a-half-minute video, Zarif manages to look both full of conviction and purpose and super annoyed that he even has to do this shit.

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Sarah Miller is the author of Inside the Mind of Gideon Rayburn and The Other Girl. She lives in Nevada City, CA.