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Climates - can a movie have nothing happen, and have bad actors, and still be a good movie. - [ flame::filmmaking ]

About Climates - can a movie have nothing happen, and have bad actors, and still be a good movie.

Previous Entry Climates - can a movie have nothing happen, and have bad actors, and still be a good movie. Jan. 22nd, 2007 @ 12:13 pm Next Entry


“Climates”, or “Iklimler”, directed, written, and staring by Nuri Bilge Ceylan as well as Ebru Ceylan, is a Turkish movie, about an aging, self absorbed professor and his failing relationship with his girlfriend. “Climates” answers the age old movie question; can a movie have nothing happen, have bad actors and a bad script and still have a good movie?


Professor Isa, Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s character, is a narcissistic bung-hole, so completely wrapped in his own value that he believes his opinion is the only one that matters. Bahar, played by Ebru Ceylan, is the unfortunate girlfriend of Isa. She is subject to his constant direction, opinion and hurtful comments. Even so, it is him who decides to separate from his girlfriend. Isa then dominates the story. He has sexual escapades, gets reassurances from his mommy and then thinks he has changed.

Nuri Bilge Ceylan has created a film that demonstrates perfectly why having the same person be the director, writer and star is usually a bad idea. Everything that could be screwed up about a movie is screwed up in this movie.

Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s character is as flat Keira Knightly’s chest. He spends the entire movie staring off, lost in his own thoughts and not letting us in his mind. It might be interesting if we were looking at a photograph, but it’s a movie. He never gets excited, experiences loss, seems to feel pain or even gets angry. Bahar covers Isa’s eyes while he is driving his moped, it causes them to crash and he shows no anger or fear. I wonder if she shot him in his leg if he would yell out or if he would just focus on vacant space.

It isn’t just his interactions with his girlfriend. He has a sexual escapade with his friend’s girlfriend. The scene is awkward and uncomfortable. For the first few minutes I couldn’t tell if it was a rape scene or a sex scene. He has scenes with his mother, his collogues, and taxi driver. Any of the characters could have replaced each other and had the same emotional, intellectual or interpersonal responses: none.

Ebru Ceylan’s performance isn’t any better. When she didn’t look like someone had cut off her eyelids, she was pushing out tears, crocodile style. After several seconds of classic two year old tantrum blubbering, a few tears come out. When she is feeling self conscious about her performance, and she should, she covers her face and shakes her shoulders to portray sobbing. Each of these are followed by whiney, hard breathing, bellowing. I think she was getting her acting tips from my three year old niece.

There are essentially twelve lines of dialogue in this film, (and I use film lightly.) The characters are poorly written. Only one character has any emotional growth but by the time you realize her growth, you’ve already wished her dead so many times you no longer care if she expands to the size of a bean stalk.

The majority of the film is shot with long still shots, in which nothing is going on. The cinematographer can’t figure out how to make important things in focus or how to keep his camera in the right place. There are scenes where a hand is in focus. During the pseudo-sex scene the actors move head first on the floor toward the camera, so at one point you are actually looking at their scalps. It feels like a Head and Shoulders commercial.

The movie moves so slowly, I wanted to strangle the characters just so something would happen or some noise might come out.

If……………………………………………………………I……………………………………………………wrote………………………………………………this…………
…………………………………………………………….review………………………………………………………………………………in……………………………………………
…………………………………………………………………………………………….…………………………………the………………………………..pace…………………………
………………………………………………………………………………………………………of………………………………………………………………………………………………………
…………..the………….movie,……………………………it would……………………………………………………………… be………………………………………………………………… ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….this………………………… ………………………………………………………………………………………………..sentence. If they edited out half the staring and half the still shots, this movie would be less than half an hour long. I think Ayhan Ergürsel, the film editor, should be subject to water drip torture at half speed. Then maybe he’d know exactly how I felt when watching this movie.

In every scene, there are dogs howling in the background. If this was 101 Dalmatians or American Werewolf in Paris, there would be less canine lamentations. I admit, I’ve never to been to Turkey or even know that much about it but it must be the wild dog capital of the world. Children in Turkey must carry large sticks when they talk to school to prevent dog maulings. To add insult to injury, the dogs have about ten times as many lines in the movie than any of the characters do. I think Ismail Karadas, the sound editor, and Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s should be fed to a pack of wild dogs as punishment for making me sit through their languishing drivel.

I wonder how many bottles of Visine they went through shooting this movie. All of the characters use staring off to portray every emotion. They look like test bunnies at a cosmetic company. Forty-five percent of this movie is spent “lost in emotion” with their eyes wide open. A well placed child with a stick could have taken every character out with one wrong skip.

If you would like to work on your PDA during a movie and not miss anything, this movie is for you. If you want to see a movie that has good acting, a good script, interesting scenery or a film where something happens, see anything but Climates.

To answer my own question above; no.

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LaRae Meadows
laraemeadows@gmail.com
http://laraemeadows.livejournal.com
www.justpressplay.net
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