Turkish Film Festival in Chicago

Between April 17 and May 2 the Film Center will feature five very different works, all multiple prize-winners, from the new Turkish cinema which is in the midst of an exciting revival.

The Film Center is located in the theater of The School of the Art Institute of Chicago at the corner of Columbus Drive and Jackson Boulevard. Ticket prices are $7 for general admission and $3 for Film Center members. For more information, call 312/443-3733 or 312/443-3737 (24-hour hotline).

In 1996, domestic production received a big boost with THE BANDIT, directed by Yavuz Turgul, which attracted over two million viewers in just six months. A compelling tale of old codes of chivalry meeting new treachery in modern-day Istanbul, THE BANDIT contains the right blend of cinematic magic and elemental narrative to make it universally appealing.

The most recent work of veteran director Omer Kavur, a three-time winner of Best Turkish Film of the Year, is JOURNEY ON THE HOUR HAND (1997), an existential mystery rich with poignant imagery and simmering menace, in which an itinerant clock mender meets the love of his life--or perhaps of his death.

CHOLERA STREET, the local box office champion of 1997-98, directed by Mustafa Altioklar, provides over-the-top entertainment worthy of its feverish title. In a seedy but colorful area of Istanbul a barber's courageous son seeks to prove his love for a beautiful prostitute and to protect his neighborhood from an invading gangster and his posse of punks.

Dervis Zaim's unflinching debut SOMERSAULT IN A COFFIN(1996) mixes hard-edged drama with black humor to depicts a side of life in Turkey that filmgoers rarely see. Incorrigible thief Mahsun haunts the Rumelihisar area of Istanbul, sponging off fishermen and cafe owners and getting the worst of his encounters with the police.

Set in Izmir, INNOCENCE (1997), written and directed by Zeki Demirkubuz, also focuses on the pressures besetting Turkey's underclass. Released from prison after serving a 10-year sentence, ex-con Yusuf tries to survive in a society where social turbulence, an economic crisis, and an unstable political situation have created a
new reality.

The series is presented in Chicago with the assistance of the Cinema Committee of the Turkish American Cultural Alliance and the Consulate General of Turkey.



1997, Mustafa Altioklar, Turkey, 118 min.
With Okan Bayülgen, Müjde Ar
Saturday, April 17 at 3:30 p.m.
Sunday, April 18 at 6:00 p.m.


1997, Omer Kavur, Turkey, 120 min.
With Mehmet Aslantug, Sahika Tekand
Sunday, April 18 at 3:30 p.m.
Thursday, April 22 at 6:00 p.m.


1996, Yavuz Turgul, Turkey, 121 min.
With Sener Sen, Ugur Yücel, Sermin Sen
Saturday, April 24 at 3:30 p.m.
Sunday, April 25 at 3:30 p.m.


Saturday, May 1 at 2:00 p.m.
Sunday, May 2 at 2:00 p.m.


Saturday, May 1 at 4:00 p.m.
Sunday, May 2 at 4:00 p.m.