This is a movie within movie, which is almost recursive, i.e., the movie inside looks like director Ceylan's previous movie, Kasaba. It is about the movie director, Muzaffer, going back to ...
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Aydin, a former actor, runs a small hotel in central Anatolia with his young wife Nihal with whom he has a stormy relationship and his sister Necla who is suffering from her recent divorce.... See full summary »
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This is a movie within movie, which is almost recursive, i.e., the movie inside looks like director Ceylan's previous movie, Kasaba. It is about the movie director, Muzaffer, going back to his hometown to make a movie using a cast of local people. While Muzaffer is around, his mother complains about simple health problems, his father is in a legal fight against the government for his land, his cousin gets out of his job to help Muzaffer who promises him to find a job in Istanbul, and his little cousin Ali tries to carry an egg in his pocket for 40 days so that he'll get the watch of his dreams. In the meantime, they get to form the cast for Muzaffer's movie as well. Written by
Nuri Bilge Ceylan has taken the sensitive, beautiful, rich cinematography and directing that he used on Kasaba and has successfully applied these to a more complex and expansive film. This time, there is a plot, a storyline that follows how several of the characters are trying to address certain problems that they face. Specifically, these are Muzzafer's desire to make a film, his father's desire to claim and keep a plot of woodland, and his cousin's desire to leave the small town and move to Istanbul. The plot is not too complex, it is not "exciting," there is no great, complete culmination, yet it is powerful and emotional nonetheless. We follow the characters and their efforts to address the issues in a calm, but beautiful and sensitive manner.
Like Kasaba, this film's strong points are great beauty and showing "real" events and characters in a pure, simple form. The humour, emotion, and drama are subtle, yet the film succeeds in evoking strong emotion and empathy with the characters. There is no overt sadness, anger, happiness, etc., demonstrated strongly in the film, but the viewer can feel these very strongly.
In part, this is due to the film maker's very sensitive, artistic techniques and abilities, but there is more. The actors are on the whole simply wonderful. They succeed so well at being extremely convincing and subtly creating great emotion and richness of character, so that the viewer can easily understand the greater meaning to a small gesture or phrase. As before in Kasaba, I particularly love Emin Ceylan, who plays the father/grandfather, but they are all wonderful, including Muzaffer Ozdemir and Emin Toprak.
While the ending may seem a little inconclusive, it nevertheless provides some resolution or at least new realisations about the three main issues facing characters. Again, this is handled subtly and beautifully.
In the end, this film is visually beautiful and convincingly portrays events and characters simply, without being "done up" and in a manner that evokes great empathy. It thus succeeds beautifully at its apparent goals.
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