Sunday, April 15, 2012
ONCE UPON A TIME IN ANATOLIA
In Turkish, with English subtitles, it was nevertheless almost impossible to figure out what had happened, or was happening. Slowly a kind of plot unfolds -- very, very slowly. I must applaud the photography; it was outstanding. The acting absolutely superb. Each actor so excellent that his personality/attitude/ and thoughts at the moment clearly visible on his face. But the film is frustratingly boring at the same time that it is fascinating. A group of men (including a police inspector and a doctor) bring the prisoner accused of murder -obviously - to point out where the body is buried. Will they find it? That's the suspense. Meanwhile, the mundane conversations among the seekers are shared in their absurdity. Bleak landscapes are exquisitely filmed; prisoner remains almost entirely silent. This is definitely a movie for those who can appreciate "art" films. I didn't fall asleep during the movie, though I'm told other people have done so! The Director is Nuri Bilge Ceylan, whose name means nothing to me, but may ring a bell with those who are more sophisticated in their tastes for avant garde movie making. I didn't love it, but I didn't hate it, either. I just wish someone could explain to me why the guy was murdered (I think the clue was given somewhere in the film, but I couldn't catch it.) There's also a sub-plot about a little boy that also left me bewildered. There's an autopsy scene that wasn't as gruesome as it might have been.