Boston Turkish Film and Music Festival4th ANNUAL BOSTON TURKISH FILM FESTIVAL SM
April 1 - April 10, 2005

"TEN BEST TURKISH FILMS"

INNOCENCE (Masumiyet)

 

Directed by Zeki Demirkubuz
 
Cast:  Guven Kirac, Haluk Bilginer, Derya Alabora, Yalcin Cakmak, Melis Tuna
 
1997, 113 minutes
 
In Turkish with English subtitles  

 

Festivals and Awards:

  • Grand Prize and Best Actor Awards, Angers
  • George and Ruta Sadoul Grand Prize
  • Grand Prize Films From South, Oslo
  • Special Jury Prize, Mediterranean Film Festival, Brussels
  • Public Prize, Innsbruck
  • Grand Prize and Best Actor Awards, Tebessa
  • Istanbul International Film Festival, Best Turkish Film of the Year
  • Second Prize, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor, Best Editing Awards, Golden Orange Film Festival, Antalya, Turkey
  • Best Film, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress, Golden Cocoon Film Festival, Adana, Turkey
  • Turkish Cinema Writers Association Awards for Best Film, 
    Best Director and Best Script

    The film participated in various international film festivals and it was also shown at French cinemas. Masumiyet  (Innocence) was also nominated in the Venice, Mardel Plata, Strasbourg, Selonica, Hamburg and Vancouver Film Festivals. It received the "Great Award" and the "Best Actor Award" in the Angers Festival, "Great Award" in Paris and the "Great Award" in the Oslo Film Festival. 

Synopsis:

"Cinema has a language of its own. More often than not, the combination of casting errors and indeterminate plot mean cinema bears no resemblance to real life. But cinema also has the power to be life-changing. A good film can alter perceptions, invoke an entirely new language and provide the same kind of stimulation as the finest literature. To give an example... I have, for a long time, been living with a film I felt compelled to watch twice in rapid succession. Zeki Demirkubuz's Innocence provoked me into thinking about cinema, acting, the world, innocence, childhood, poverty, compassion, conscience, language, dumbness; in short, about life - a life I had founded on personal quest. Innocence will rank forever alongside the girl's eyes in the finale of Tarkovsky's Stalker, one of Mahler's Songs for Dead Children, Vermeer's light, one of Blake's visions, a blue line by Ece Ayhan...

Innocence opens the kind of doors we are unlikely ever to see again in Turkish cinema. And this is exactly why the film should be remembered alongside Metin Erksan's extraordinarily idiosyncratic style of cinema. Demirkubuz is insistent that we understand his self-styled language. Beyond the actual story he tells, he presents the story of how he translates that story into his language. Like all great filmmakers, he uses his language without the least concession to the syntax imposed by Hollywood cinema. The dramaturgical rules that commercial cinema has developed after years of experience are of no concern to him. As a result, you are caught up in a liberation process while watching the film. The film's potent and utterly bewildering narrative style is incomparable. 

In capturing memorable cinematic moments, Demirkubuz is rewarded for his intransigence, his perversity, his obsessive love of the work he does. Like the character, Ugur, whose passion drags her unflinchingly towards death, he focuses on his personal obsessions and stares us straight in the face without the slightest concern for commercial success. This is how he has the courage to film the 10-minute scene where Bekir tells his life story - a scene that is sure to go down in the annals of Turkish cinema - in a single shot." 

Yildirim Turker, Radikal

 

About the Director: Zeki Demirkubuz

Born in Isparta in 1964, Demirkubuz is a graduate of the Istanbul University Department of Communications. He began his career as an assistant to director Zeki Okten. His first film, Block C (C Blok), and his later works have mainly been based on original screenplays conceived and written by Demirkubuz himself. 

Demirkubuz first gained the notice of film critics and international audiences with Innocence (Masumiyet) and later with The Third Page(Ucuncu Sayfa), which were screened at numerous film festivals in Turkey and Europe, including the film festivals of Venice, Locarno and Rotterdam and the Boston Turkish Film Festival. 

This was followed by the successful reception of Fate (Yazgi) and Confession (Itiraf), which were among the films of the 2nd Boston Turkish Film Festival, and both films were screened at Un Certain Regard at Cannes. Fate and Confession, are the first two features in Tales About Darkness, a trilogy set to conclude with The Waiting Room (Bekleme Odasi). With Fate and Confession, Zeki Demirkubuz has become the first director to have two films screened at the same time in Cannes. Demirkubuz won a FIPRESCI (The International Federation of Film Critics) Award and the Best Director prize at the Istanbul Film Festival for Fate and Confession. Fate also won Best Director and Best 3rd Film awards, and the Jury Special Award at the 38th Golden Orange Film Festival in Antalya, Turkey.  Zeki Demirkubuz won the Best Director of the Year Award with The Waiting Room (Bekleme Odasi) in the Istanbul Film Festival on April 24, 2004, which had its North America premiere at the 3rd Boston Turkish Film Festival in 2004. Director Zeki Demirkubuz had been a guest of the Boston Turkish Film Festival twice, in 2003 and 2004.

Filmography:
 
Block C (C Blok, 1994)
Innocence (Masumiyet, 1997)
The Third Page (Ucuncu Sayfa, 1999)
Fate (Yazgi, 2001)
Confession (Itiraf, 2001)
The Waiting Room (Bekleme Odasi, 2003)

 

 

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