9 user 3 critic

Harem Suare (1999)

In Baghdad in the early 1900's, a young woman rises up through the ranks of power within the Ottoman Empire. She and a eunuch plan an elaborate scheme for the release of the female slaves.


Ferzan Ozpetek


Ferzan Ozpetek (story and screenplay), Gianni Romoli (story and screenplay)
4 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »




Credited cast:
Marie Gillain ... Safiye
Alex Descas ... Nadir
Lucia Bosè ... Old Safiye (as Lucia Bosé)
Valeria Golino ... Anita
Malick Bowens ... Midhat
Christophe Aquillon Christophe Aquillon ... Sumbul
Serra Yilmaz Serra Yilmaz ... Gulfidan
Haluk Bilginer ... Abdulhamit
Pelin Batu Pelin Batu ... Cerkez Cariye
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ayla Algan ... Valide
Nilüfer Açikalin Nilüfer Açikalin ... Selma
Meriç Benlioglu Meriç Benlioglu
Cansel Elcin Cansel Elcin ... Journaliste
Basak Köklükaya ... Gulbahar
Felicitè Mbezelè Felicitè Mbezelè ... Karanergiz


As the Ottoman Empire comes to an end, an old servant spins a tale to keep the women in the Sultan's harem distracted. The story is about Safiye, who first becomes the Sultan's favorite concubine, and later the official wife. As she gains power and influence, she engages in a tryst with Nadir, the black eunuch. When the Empire falls, the Sultan escapes to Europe, leaving all the concubines behind. Safiye fights for their rights under the new order... Written by L.H. Wong <lhw@sfs.org.sg>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | History

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some sexuality/nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

User Reviews

Very deep and fulfilling
7 August 2003 | by arthur-72See all my reviews

If you are looking for this movie fulfill some of you "Hollywood" desires and expectations as to what a Harem is you will be sorely disappointed. Unlike what a previous reviewer said it is full of sumptuous and colorful costumes. The dull color that the reviewer notes comes from the low key lighting that is accurately used to portray the setting and story. It is lighting that is very appropriate for the tale. This is a tale of one woman's experience in the last Harem of the Ottoman Empire. It is full of relationships between both the occupants of the Harem, and those without. A previous reviewer asks how a eunuch can have sexual relations. Castration serves to make it so that the person cannot reproduce. It does nothing to the need for love or desire, which is what one of the characters in the movie shows. And if the previous reviewer had paid attention the character in question did not use his crippled organ to perform for the member of the Harem. If you are simply looking for titillation, then it would be good for you to look elsewhere. If you are looking for a good story which well thought out and rich background then you should enjoy this one!

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Italy | France | Turkey


Turkish | French | Italian

Release Date:

21 May 1999 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

Harem suare See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| | (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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