Turkish director, Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s latest film, Winter Sleep, is a ponderous affair set in the snow-covered highlands of Cappadocia. Long intense conversations brought on by the forced isolation of winter expose the tensions between social classes and within a marriage.
A cinematic experience that evokes the spirit of Fellini or Rossellini, with the lush cinematography and social satire that has always been such a grand tradition in Italian cinema. With The Great Beauty, director Paolo Sorrentino pays homage to the hidden beauty of The Eternal City, while at the same time commenting on the moral and ethical decay of a city, a people and probably society in general.
An epic revenge drama based on the true story of Phoolan Devi, the Bandit Queen, this film highlights the dire circumstances of young girls in India, who are forced into, often abusive, arranged marriages with older men. It also touches on the problematic issue of caste, where power is usually in the hands of the upper castes, with little or no recourse to legal protection for the lowest castes.
Turkish director, Ceylan’s almost ethereal meander through the Anatolian steppe draws you into an existential dream world, simultaneously mysterious and ancient. Although beautifully filmed, it is telling that a movie with no special effects, and on the surface a very simple story line, can reverberate with universal themes long after the final credits have rolled across the screen.
If you are tired of formulaic British gangster movies, filled with all the obligatory clichés including dodgy Cockney accents, then Wild Bill will be a refreshing change. It combines gritty drama with loads of pathos and a few poignant laughs. Despite a fairly straightforward plot line, the main characters are depicted with sufficient complexity to pull you into their struggles.