Director: Zuli Aladag


German public broadcaster ARD’s decision to postpone a primetime screening of Zuli Aladag’s provocative and potentially explosive Rage caused much controversy in Germany.

Aladag’s film, which went on to gain considerable critical acclaim on the festival circuit, tells of a middle-class German teenager who is bullied by a Turkish youth and the German family’s futile efforts to prevent the abuse. Can (Oktay Özdemir) is a cocky young Turk who beats up and extorts money from Felix Laub (Robert Holler). While Felix is trying to play down Can’s behaviour and simply wants to get on with life, his father Simon (August Zirner), an academic, becomes increasingly angry at Can’s behaviour and sets about solving the problem. His efforts only succeed in further antagonising Can, whose rage is unleashed in a spiral of violence and revenge that ends in a climax reminiscent of Michael Haneke’s Funny Games. Aladag’s film may be less sophisticated than Haneke’s, but it’s undeniably effective in illustrating the titular rage of its Turkish protagonist.

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