Sinan (Aydın Doğu Demirkol) is about to graduate from college; an aspiring yet unpublished novelist, he hopes to avoid following in the footsteps of his father Idris (the superb Murat Cemcir), a resolutely upbeat rural school teacher. Returning home to visit his family, Sinan finds his father mired in debt he refuses to acknowledge.
Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan follows his Palme d’Or-winning Winter Sleep, and the equally impressive Once Upon a Time in Anatolia, with another intimate epic, an emotionally complex reunion between estranged father and son played out against the magnificent Çanakkale locations. Ceylan once again foregrounds intricate dialogue, with his characters engaging in wry verbal jousts that encompass philosophy, religion and ethics and everything in between. Heartfelt, elegiac and deeply poignant, it is one of the director’s very best.
(Notes by David O’Mahony.)
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