SECTION: Close Up TR

In spite of everything contemporary Turkish cinema remains willing to engage in discourse and full of artistic surprises. With psychological sensitivity and unforeseen twists and turns, current developments, historical references and personal upheavals are thematised in a manner that is thoughtful, visually powerful and attentive to detail, whilst crossing the boundaries between mainstream, genre film and art house cinema.

The vintage-style THE CEMIL SHOW is reminiscent of the golden days of Turkish cinema, when up to 300 films were made annually during the so-called Yeşilçam era. Today, Yeşilçam is not only associated with sentimental romance films and unconventional heroes, but also anti-authoritarian coolness, more liberal female roles and a less rigid acting hierarchy. And still today directors, whose art house productions enjoy success at major festivals, continue to make significant contributions to commercial productions and the local TV series industry. Though so-called mainstream cinema produces burlesque comedies and historical epics in line with official narratives, one can also find works on topics such as gentrification, corruption and gender issues. Although critical voices within the commercial film industry have quietened down for the moment, the variety of genres remains, with the heirs of the auteur generation coexisting with more audience-oriented works: contemporary Turkish filmmakers continue to create seemingly effortless works on serious topics, analyse moral concepts in genre productions, come up with variations on dreamlike folk motifs and muse upon family upheavals with an unconventional freshness and social ruptures with silent anger.

The series was curated by Bernd Buder.

The CLOSEUP TR series is supported by the Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung.

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