Late in the film Panahi befriends a young student collecting trash in the apartment as a favour to his friends. Panahi spontaneously follows him, camera in hand, down the elevator as he picks up trash from the other floors. This seems to be the subject that Panahi really wants to film.
The screenplay is abandoned and for the rest of the film the camera is focused on the student, describing his studies. As his student friend leaves the building to take out the trash, Panahi is not allowed to go outside as people celebrate New Years. The screen fades to black on a fire outside of the gates of his apartment block. His prison.
Panahi is still under house arrest despite the international outcry against his sentence by American and European filmmakers, including Ken Loach and The Cohen Brothers. This film although born out frustration and anguished boredom, is a testament to Panahi as a filmmaker. If a film, any piece of art, needs making it will be made even if you have to smuggle it out the country in a cake.