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Head-On (2004)

Gegen die Wand (original title)
With the intention to break free from the strict familial restrictions, a suicidal young woman sets up a marriage of convenience with a forty-year-old addict, an act that will lead to an outburst of envious love.

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25 wins & 13 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Cahit
... Seref
Zarah Jane McKenzie ... Barfrau in der Fabrik (as Zarah McKenzie)
Stefan Gebelhoff ... Nico
Catrin Striebeck ... Maren
Francesco Fiannaca ... Mann am Tresen
Mona Mur ... Stammkundin Zoe Bar
... Sibel
... Patient 1 (Psychiatrie)
... Patient 2 (Psychiatrie)
Hermann Lause ... Dr. Schiller
Karin Niwiger ... Kassiererin (Psychiatrie)
Demir Gökgöl ... Yunus Güner (Vater)
Cem Akin ... Yilmaz Güner (Bruder)
Aysel Iscan ... Birsen Güner (Mutter)
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Storyline

In 'Gegen die Wand' Cahit, a 40-something male from Mersin in Turkey has removed everything Turkish from his life. He has become an alcoholic drug addict and at the start of the movie wants to end it all. Sibel a 20-something female from Hamburg wishes to please her Turkish parents yet yearns for freedom. She has had her nose broken by her brother for being seen holding hands with a boy and yet she can not break her mother's heart and run away. She too attempts suicide and she first approaches Cahit there at the Hospital. Sibel asks Cahit to marry her, as she believes this to be the way out of her parent's house. She promises Cahit that their relationship will be like roommates, not like a married couple. The film follows Sibel and Cahit as they get married, become closer and eventually fall in love. Written by Serena P.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Raw, Powerful, Extraordinary... A Love Story of Surprisingly Epic Proportions! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong graphic sexuality, pervasive language, some brutal violence and drug content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site [Germany]

Country:

|

Language:

| |

Release Date:

11 March 2004 (Germany)  »

Also Known As:

Head-On  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Sibel Kekilli was discovered at a Cologne shopping mall. See more »

Goofs

The psychiatrist at the beginning of the film tells Cahit about a song by the band The The containing the line "If you can't change the world, change your world". The actual quote (from the song "Lonely Planet", included in the album "Dusk") is "If you can't change the world, change yourself". See more »

Quotes

Cahit: I'm sorry I ran off before.
Sibel: That's OK.
Cahit: I'm a mental case, you know?
Sibel: [Kisses Cahit]
See more »

Crazy Credits

When it comes to Special Thanks, there's a name: Arsen Lüpen. Arsène Lupin is a fictional character, created by the French writer Maurice Leblanc. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Crossing the Bridge: The Sound of Istanbul (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Acilar yok (Birgün mutlaka)
( K/T: Aytun Ede )
Performed by Aytun Ede
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Another solid film from Faith Akin
11 January 2006 | by See all my reviews

As a Turkish-American, my praise for "Head-On/Gegen die Wand/ Duvarlarla Karsi" is perhaps predictable and it does admittedly contain a degree of subjectivity. But, one must realize that Akin has succeeded where other talented Turkish-German directors have not. There was a genuine, noble effort called "Yara" (an earlier Turkish-German film) which demonstrates how hard it is to make a cross-cultural film which is universally accepted- one which is not isolated to either one country of origin (in this case Turkey or Germany) or the other. "Yara" had many great performances, and moving moments with wonderful cinematography, character acting, and an amazing film score, but it still did not meet its overall creative objective. "Head On" does just that though. Birol Unel and Sibel Kekili are profoundly amazing, as is Meltem Cumbul and the rest of the supporting cast. The film is also well-edited and it sticks to its complicated theme throughout. We really feel for everyone involved, even many (but, certainly not all)of the antagonists, and care about them. The film is brutal and harsh in its depiction of both Germany's cultural isolation towards immigrants and in backwards social mentalities in conservative Turkish circles which both oppress those who fervently oppose them and prevents those who challenge the mentality from getting past the discrimination which results from the darkest aspect of Anatolian life (which alas does not change with immigration). A tough film which should stand the test of time. But, it is not quite as profound as the Turkish film "Uzak/Distant" which was released here in the USA last year. Nor, did I enjoy it as much as another current German film "Downfall," which I (it alas seems to be a minority view) found absolutely riveting. But, along with "In July," there can be no dispute of Akin's talents which will be challenged by the high expectations many of us in the world Turkish community have for him. But, he has clearly earned that.


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