"Umut" is the story of an illiterate man and his family, whose existence depends on his income as a horse cab driver. When one of his horses is killed by an automobile, and when it is clear... See full summary »
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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Cabbar
Gülsen Alniaçik ...
Fatma
...
Hasan
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Kürsat Alniaçik ...
Memet Emin
...
Hüseyin Hodja, the imam
Enver Dönmez ...
The pickpocket
Mehmet Eken
Lütfü Engin ...
The grocer (as Lütfi Engin)
Sema Engin ...
Cemile
Nizam Ergüden ...
Nizam
Hicret Gürson ...
Hicret
Semra Kaya
Ahmet Koç ...
Ahmet, the repairman
Kemal Tatli ...
The police chief
Sevgi Tatli ...
Hatice
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Storyline

"Umut" is the story of an illiterate man and his family, whose existence depends on his income as a horse cab driver. When one of his horses is killed by an automobile, and when it is clear that neither justice nor charity will prevail, the man, played by Güney, begins a slow slide into despair. On the advice of a local holy man, and fuelled by an indefatigable optimism, he sets out into the desert in quest of a mythical lost treasure, slipping further and further into that final, ineluctable moment where hope itself becomes the last terrible delusion. Written by Daniel Yates <kamerad76@hotmail.com>

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Drama

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1970 (Turkey)  »

Also Known As:

Hoffnung  »

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User Reviews

 
Thought-provoking and confusing.
25 October 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I didn't know what to expect coming into seeing Umut, only having heard that the critical consensus is that this is the best Turkish film ever made (don't know if that's true). Taken as a whole, this is a challenging film to explain. It is divided between neo-realistic photography and settings, and a story which ends almost surrealistically. It is the story of poverty as injustice, but also poverty as the result of the inaction or foolish actions of those who are poor. It may be read, also, as a comment on capitalism at large, or a comment on masculinity, or a religious commentary, or all of the above, or something else entirely.

Artistically, it is stunning. The available-light photography captures the streets of the city and the dawns on the plain with simplicity and poignancy. However, it isn't perfect - in my opinion, it is weakened by poor acting on the part of several characters (including the primary character's wife especially), and the stock which I saw (on Tour at the Freer gallery in Washington D.C.) had several distracting gaps of several seconds each.


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