7.4/10
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Three Monkeys (2008)

Üç Maymun (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama | 12 September 2008 (Italy)
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1:11 | Trailer

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A family suffers from a major communication breakdown during their struggle to get through their hardships.

Director:

Nuri Bilge Ceylan

Writers:

Ebru Ceylan (screenplay), Ercan Kesal (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
12 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview:
Yavuz Bingöl ... Eyüp
Hatice Aslan ... Hacer
Ahmet Rifat Sungar ... Ismail
Ercan Kesal ... Servet
Cafer Köse Cafer Köse ... Bayram
Gürkan Aydin Gürkan Aydin ... Cocuk
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Storyline

Near the Bosporus, Eyüp and Hacer live in a modest flat with their son Ismail, in his twenties, who's doing poorly in his studies. Few words pass between them, and a past family tragedy brings sorrow daily. On a rainy night, Eyüp's boss Servet, a wealthy businessman who's entering politics, hits a pedestrian on a lonely road. He drives off and offers money to Eyüp if Eyüp will take the fall - probably a six-month sentence. Eyüp agrees, and while he's in prison, Ismail wants his mother to ask Servet for enough money to buy a car. Servet, in turn, desires Hacer. How can this play out? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site | Official site | See more »

Country:

Turkey | France | Italy

Language:

Turkish

Release Date:

12 September 2008 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

Three Monkeys See more »

Filming Locations:

Turkey See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,045, 29 March 2009, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$41,343, 19 July 2009
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Turkey's 2009 Academy Awards official submission to Foreign-Language Film category. See more »

Goofs

Ismail's safety belt fastened on and off at consecutive cuts,while he is driving his father back from the prison. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Definitely not the tourists' Turkey
28 August 2009 | by Red-125See all my reviews

Üç maymun (2008), directed by Nuri Bilge Ceylan, is a Turkish film shown in the United States with the title, "Three Monkeys." The film explores the dynamics of a working-class family when these dynamics are changed by the actions of an upper-class employer.

Yavuz Bingol plays Eyüp, who is a chauffeur for a wealthy businessman/politician. His wife, Hacer--played by the lovely Hatice Aslan--and his son, Ismail (Rifat Sungar) are the other two family members. Although many reviewers have called the family dysfunctional, I think that, at the outset of the film, they aren't much different from other families. We all know of families with two hard-working parents and a young-adult son who lives at home. The son is drifting towards trouble, but hasn't actually gotten there yet. The scenario isn't all that unusual.

At the very outset of the film, the chauffeur's employer has killed a pedestrian, and then left the scene of the accident. That sets the plot in motion--everything follows from that event.

This is a somber, thoughtful film. There's very little on-screen violence and almost no gaiety either. Ceylan reminds me of Chantal Ackerman in his use of long, middle-distance takes. If someone is going somewhere, we get long scenes in which we see the person walking, then riding on a train, then walking again. The scenes aren't random. At that point in the plot, the person must move from point A to point B. Most directors would show him or her leaving a house, and arriving at an office, or vice-versa. Ceylan shows us the character actually traveling from A to B.

Once I got into the rhythm of the film, I enjoyed this slow and careful directorial style. Whether or not you like the film may hinge on your acceptance or rejection of Ceylan's technique.

We saw this film in the wonderful Dryden Theatre at George Eastman House in Rochester, NY. I think it would work almost as well on DVD.


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