Istanbul Modern Cinema looks at ‘damage’ of love
The Bow. The film program ‘Damage’ looks at blind loves in which strong passion surpasses will and judgment.In the program “Damage,” Istanbul Modern Cinema presents a selection of 11 films about lives ruled by passion. Featuring examples from diverse geographies and periods in film history, the program looks at blind loves in which strong passion surpasses will and judgment, at the idea of submission that underlies passion, and at different destinies where the line between passion and captivity disappears.
Included in the program are films by directors such as Tarkovsky, Demirkubuz, Buñuel, and Fassbinder.
Among the films Bring me the Head of Alfredo, which is about a piano-player and bartender Bennie. Believing that he will get a bounty of one million dollars if he brings Alfredo’s head, Bennie sets out with his girlfriend on a drunken, violent journey to Mexico. In this journey stinking of blood and tequila, Peckinpah does not spare his antihero even though he likes him. Beginning like a Western and regarded as a cult movie years later, the film later takes on a darker tone, testing the boundaries of passion and obsession.
The Sweet Hereafter by legendary director Atom Egoyan is about Mitchell Stephens, the big-city lawyer played by Holm, who arrives in a small Canadian town. The small-town community has been struck by a terrible tragedy when a 14-year-old child was killed in a horrible manner in a bus accident. Stephens approaches the grieving parents and attempts to unite them and persuade them to sue for damages.
Meanwhile, he is trying to deal with his own daughter’s drug addiction problems and is about to lose her. Nicole, the only surviving witness, is a key to the lawsuit. Through his metaphorical microscope Egoyan looks at the essence of crime and at the complexity of human relationships.
Lessons of love
Enduring Love, which is a craftily written dramatic thriller. Adapted from the novel by Ian McEwan, the film explores love, destiny, and passion, and could be considered a kind of Fatal Attraction between two men. Diva directed by Jean-Jacques Beineix is one of the first examples of the French Neo-Baroque period. Jules, an opera-loving postman, is especially obsessed with American diva Cynthia Hawkins.
When he secretly records her recital, a gang of record pirates start chasing him. The corrupt police are also involved, making matters worse. This colorful and dystopian yet romantic film mingles many genres, from action to noir. No doubt the most impressive element that gives the film its spirit is Vladimir Cosma’s opera-like music.
Sex, Lies, and Videotape, a cult movie by Steven Soderbergh tells the story of a couple with a complicated sexual life. The equilibrium in the relationship of the couple is upset with the arrival of a stranger. With videotaped sexual fantasies, along with all the lies and secrets, relationships become ever more complicated. Sex, Lies, and Videotape was written in eight days by Soderbergh, when he was 29,during a trip to Los Angeles. With an unexpected box-office success, the film won the Palm d’Or and earned Spader the Best Actor award at Cannes.
Solaris, by Andrei Tarkovsky, is about a cosmonaut and psychologist Kris Kelvin. Russian filmmaker Tarkovsky has created a masterpiece by breaking the science-fiction mold in Stanislaw Lem’s novel and instilling his own ideas and feelings about the concepts of humanity versus nature and truth. A profound suspense movie about the pangs of conscience, Solaris won both the Grand Prix and the FIPRESCI prize at Cannes.
The Bow of Kim ki-duk tells the story of a 60-year old man who lives on a boat in the middle of the ocean and has been raising a young girl since she was a child. The twosome live secluded from the outside world and earn their living by renting the boat to fishermen and predicting fortune by shooting arrows. The boat and vast sea mean everything to the young girl; the fisherman watches over her in a fatherly manner, takes care of her, and buys her presents for the day they will get married. With sage-like patience, the man dreams of marrying her, as he waits for the girl to turn 18. When a young boy steals her heart, however, things do not go as planned.