Friday 10 - Thursday 16 December 2006
Welcome to the London Turkish Film Festival - now in its 13th year and still as unique and vibrant as ever. We hope you are able to join us on our cinematic journey through seven days of the best new feature films, documentaries and shorts accompanied by some of the people who made them.
Highlights of TFF 2006 include:
Antalya Audience Prize Best Film winner DREAMING GAMES; TOSS UP, centred around the armed conflicts in South Eastern Turkey; the beautifully told and moving story of a woman connecting with her lost past WAITING FOR THE CLOUDS; urban drama ANGEL'S FALL; historical tale KILLING THE SHADOWS; Reha Erdem's intriguing story of amnesia MUMMY I'M SCARED; the remarkable Iranian production BORDER CAFÉ; the truly outstanding MY FATHER AND MY SON and from closer to home, the London produced CULTURAL MENACE.
This year the Festival includes four programmes of documentaries: FAR, a personal documentary about the remaining inhabitants of a Kurdish village and those who have left + WHEEL, Ahmet Soner's charming portrait of village life; FRAGMENTS OF THE PAST, exploring the tradition of cinema-going among the Turkish speaking communities in London + I USED TO LIVE IN CYPRUS, tracking the journeys of first generation Turkish Cypriots migrating to the UK; UPSIDE DOWN TANGO, documenting triumph in the bleakest times following the Argentinian economic crash of 2001; and finally acclaimed director Fatih Akin's dazzling musical portrait of Istanbul CROSSING THE BRIDGE.
A programme of short films will showcase the very best work from young filmmakers working in the UK and Turkey.
As usual the Festival will include appearances from directors and actors from some of our featured films. This year we look forward to welcoming: Ezel Akay (director, KILLING THE SHADOWS), Sebnem Dönmaz and Beyazit Ozturk (actors, KILLING THE SHADOWS), Isil Yücesoy, Koksal Engur and Ali Düsenkalkar (actors, MUMMY I'M SCARED).
And of course we especially look forward to welcoming you...
Vedide Kaymak & Charles Rubinstein
ANGEL'S FALL (Melegin Dususu)
Turkey-Greece 2004 / 98m / English Subtitles / Cert 15
Director: Semih Kaplanoglu Cast: Tulin Ozen, Budak Akalin, Musa Karagoz, Engin Dogan, Yesim Ceren Bozoglu, Ozlem Turhal, Can Kolukisa
Following Kaplanoglu's debut feature AWAY FROM HOME, this urban drama follows the lost souls to be found in any city. Zeynep has to put up with her father's abuse at night, and during the day, she confronts the romantic approaches of her only friend, Mustafa. On the other side of the city, Selçuk grieves for his recently deceased wife. A suitcase full of her clothes will unexpectedly change Zeynep's life.
BORDER CAFÉ (Café Transit)
Iran-France 2005 / 105m / English subtitles / Cert 12A
Director: Kambuzia Partovi
Reihan, an Iranian widow and mother of two young children, reopens the roadhouse formerly run by her husband. Since running such a business is taboo for women, she encounters much resistance, particularly from her conservative brother-in-law, Naser. Ultimately the fate of Reihan and her roadhouse is decided by a local court, and the verdict leaves Reihan pondering her place in the world. An Iranian film with Turkish connections!
CULTURAL MENACE (Kültürel Tehdit)
UK 2005 / 76m / Cert 15
Directors: Erim Metto & Robbi Stevens
Cast: Tolga Safer, Osman Hassan, Elbiz, Jason Johnson, Yasmin Gurreeboo, Peter Dean, Laurie Mcmenemy, John Ioannou, Culver Greenidge
An adaptation of Shakespeare's 'Romeo and Juliet' set in the London of today. On the Sumka Estate the Morte gang's hold on the local drugs trade is challenged when someone tips off the police. Gang leader Benny is determined to take revenge on the informant. Elsewhere on the estate, Cemal tries to instill his cultural values on his family. Caught up in this turmoil of hate, revenge and cultural conflict we meet the star-crossed lovers, Cemal's daughter Jeylanand Benny's brother Ronnie. Their fate seems sealed from the moment they meet, in this world where hate, not love, prevails.
DREAMING GAMES (Hayal Kurma Oyunlari)
Turkey 2004 / 90m /English Subtitles / Cert 15
Director: Yavuz Ozkan
Cast: Tarik Akan, Pelin Batu, Serap Aksoy
The latest feature from veteran director Yavuz Özkan tells the story of an introverted father struggling to make a living, his worn-out family, and the regulars of his restaurant each dealing with their own problems. Each character's life intersects with the other, and though their struggles are different, they are all looking for the same thing. Awarded Best Film 2004 Antalya Audience Prize.
KILLING THE SHADOWS (Hacivat Karagoz)
Turkey-France 2006 / 134m / English Subtitles / Cert 15
Director: Ezel Akay
Cast: Haluk Bilginer, Beyazit Öztürk, Sebnem Dönmez, Güven Kiraç, Levent Kazak, Ayse Tolga, Aysen Guruda
The story of two legendary men, Karagoz and Hacivat, who lived and died by their sense of humour. Bursa 1345: the Ottoman Empire is just being born as a local state. Exhausted by Mongolian attacks, many people move to the city to start a new life. Christians, Jews, Muslims co-exist with nomadic Turks, in a corrupt Eastern Roman Empire. Karagoz, an illiterate but bright Turkish immigrant, escapes and moves to Bursa. His mother tells him a secret: how to make cement…
MUMMY, I'M SCARED (Korkuyorum Anne)
Turkey 2004 /128m / English Subtitles / Cert 12A
Director: Reha Erdem
Cast: Ali Dusenkalkar, Isil Yucesoy, Koksal Engur, Senay Gurler
MUMMY, I'M SCARED (aka What's A Human Anyway?) is set in modern-day Istanbul. Thirty-five-year-old Ali is knocked unconscious in an accident and loses his memory. Although he remembers many of the people who live in his apartment building, he cannot remember his father, Rasih. This annoys Rasih and he continuously insults his son for his amnesia. Ali not only tries to remember past events, but also explores his own being. Finally, the pieces of the intricate puzzle fit, and the events each character has experienced create a larger picture of what it means to be human.
MY FATHER AND MY SON (Babam ve Oglum)
Turkey 2005 /116m / English subtitles / Cert PG
Director: Çagan Irmak
Cast: Fikret Kuskan, Çetin Tekindor, Hümeyra, Serif Sezer
The most successful Turkish movie since THE BANDIT, MY FATHER AND MY SON is truly outstanding, with performances to match. Deniz journeys to the Aegean coast with his father Sadik to meet his grandfather for the first time. Deniz finds himself in the middle of a bizarre family group: Grandma drives a truck; aunt Bride Hanife wears a gold bracelet from wrist to neck, and there's an uncle who is a bit soft in the head.
TOSS UP (Yazi Tura)
Turkey 2004 /110m / English Subtitles / Cert 15
Director: Ugur Yucel
Cast: Olgun Simsek, Kenan Imirzalioglu,
Bahri Beyat, Eli Mango, Engin Gunaydin
TOSS UP centres around the armed conflicts in South Eastern Turkey, which cost tens of thousands of people their lives. "Devil" Ridvan and "Ghost" Cevher fought together in the South East, Ridav losing a leg, Cevher an ear. As they return to their homes, they begin to discover the dramatic effects the military service has on their lives. And then the devasting Marmara earthquake strikes…
WAITING FOR THE CLOUDS (Bulutlari Beklerken)
Turkey-France-Germany-Greece 2004 / 92m / English subtitles / Cert 15
Director: Yesim Ustaoglu
Cast: Rüchan Caliskur, Ridvan Yagci, Dimitris Kaberidis, Ismail Baysan
WAITING FOR THE CLOUDS tells the story of Eleni, left behind during a time of mass migration. Looked after by an old lady, she has lived her life under the name Ayse. She embarks on a journey of discovery to find her true indentity and mother tongue. The story is beautifully told through the eyes of a child as Eleni's memories of the past are played out against misty mountain landscapes.