Istanbul Modern to screen award-winning Turkish films
ISTANBUL – Hürriyet Daily News
Istanbul Modern Cinema program offers a repertoire of award-winning films that have aroused much interest in Turkey and abroad, achieving industry recognition and winning awards at prominent industry-related festivals.Istanbul Modern Cinema is presenting a program of new Turkish cinema: Count Us In! The program offers a repertoire of award-winning films that have aroused much interest in Turkey and abroad, achieving industry recognition and winning awards at prominent industry-related festivals; they have yet to, however, have the chance to be released in theaters (or at least ones that would do them justice).
Introducing new characters, representations of identity, and social approaches to Turkish cinema, which has developed considerably over the last 20 years, these films constitute a multi-voiced selection by offering a place to “the other” in society. With an array of 16 films, the selection includes feature-length films as well as Köken Ergun’s short “Aşura,” which competed for the Golden Bear at this year’s Berlin Film Festival, winning the DAAD Short Film Prize. Film directors and cast members will also be in attendance at the screenings.
The program commences on Oct. 3 and is set to screen “Timeshare,” a debut feature by renowned film director Ufuk Aksoy, who has been winning awards at festivals with his short films since 2005. The film is about four days in the shoes of a young woman who, after a difficult period, seeks refuge on a deserted island to spend some time in solitude in the midst of winter, believing that spending time alone will heal her. The woman’s visit on this melancholic island is spoiled by the sudden appearance of an uninvited guest. Through these two women, who have to spend the night together, the film depicts various circumstances in which we are unable to be alone, to escape, thus feeling trapped. “Timeshare” was featured at the Istanbul Film Festival last year under the category “Home.”
“Lifelong,” which has premiered at the Berlin Film Festival and won awards for Best Director and Best Cinematography at the Istanbul Film Festival, will be on screen as well. “Yozgat Blues,” by Mahmut Fazıl Coşkun, who won the award for Best Film at the Golden Boll Film Festival in Adana this month, turns his camera to the provinces and the story of Yavuz, a music teacher and singer, and his student Neşe.
“The Particle” will also take to the screens. “The Particle” is Erdem Tepegöz’s debut feature and earned him four awards at the Golden Orange Film Festival. The film presents a realistic and plain view of the working class, centering on Zeynep, who, fighting unemployment, struggles to survive in the big city, with her little daughter and mother. Life becomes even more difficult when she is fired from her job at a textile mill. She sets off to work at a new job she finds outside the city, where the workers she comes across there all turn out to be crooks. As the camera follows Zeynep throughout the film, depicting her dark world and her daily struggle, the director explores the question of existence through the story of this ordinary human being.
Documentary on LGBT community
“Ashura” by director Köken Ergu, which won the German Academic Exchange Program’s Short Film Prize at the 63rd Berlinale, hits the museum’s screen, while “My Child,” a documentary that takes place in the homes of five different families in Turkey, tells the story of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and trans-gendered individuals through the eyes of their parents. All these different stories are joined together through themes such as denial, trauma, helplessness, fear, shame, and acceptance. Having not only accepted their children for who they are, but also having taken the next step to share their experiences, the parents redefine what it means to be an activist in a homophobic society.
“Thou Gild’st the Even,” a story in Onur Ünlü’s most recent film, alternates between fantastic and absurd drama and sheds light on the ordinary troubles of townsmen who have extraordinary abilities.
In this town with two suns and three full moons in the sky, Cemal, who can see through walls, has no expectations from life. While he is trying to deal with his distress, Yasemin, who can move objects remotely with her fingers, is seeking a way out. “Thou Gild’st the Even,” which won the award for Best Film at the Istanbul Film Festival, “argues that the essence of humanity would remain the same even if the world worked in such a way; that troubles, sorrows, and anxieties of mankind wouldn’t be much different,” said director Ünlü.