His previous movie, Once Upon A Time In Anatolia, won the Grand Jury Prize in 2011, along with a host of other awards. Philosophically poignant and cinematically picturesque, Ceylan’s films never fail to disappoint and Winter Sleep is no exception.
The bleak Anatolian steppe continues to be a determined feature of Ceylan’s films – in Once Upon a Time in Anatolia its brooding landscape could almost be seen as the protagonist – and the story focuses on a mountaintop hotel owner, Mr. Aydin (Haluk Bilginer). Aydin has delusions of grandeur within his community and sees himself as the local kingpin of this small pond.
However, soon enough it becomes clear that Aydin is something of a joke to his village – even his wife and sister, with whom he lives, fail to take him seriously. The film opens with Ilyas (Emirhan Doruktutan), a poor boy whose father cannot afford to pay rent, throwing a stone at the windscreen of Aydin. The following events conspire to remove Aydin from his imagined pedestal and face the realities and hardships of community life. He is forced to confront both his disgruntled tenants and himself in a winding tale of self-discovery.
Like Once Upon a Time in Anatolia, Winter Sleep has a fairytale-like quality, never straying from the meta-reality that what the audience is watching is a story. Yet this is not to say that the film’s subscribes to fairytale optimism. Typically Ceylan chills his audience with social truths that remind us of the economic inequalities of human society. As one critic describes it: ‘think The Shining as retold by Chekhov, without the axe and the spooks.’ If that sounds up your street then be sure not to miss it!
|Where||Various Locations | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Leicester Square (underground)|
21 Nov 14 – 21 Dec 14, 12:00 AM
|Website||Click her for more information.|