(DVD on sales February 24th) Another film about love at first sight, but this one was certainly a first for me:a Turkish guy and a Ukrainian gal. The directors are Maryna Gorbach, Mehmet Bahadir Er, and the film was a collaboration between Turkey and Ukraine. Kyiv was the location; it was winter, and white snow covered the city. The photography was quite beautiful with many shots of the city landscape. However, it was not all glamorous, it also showed its inner city and snapshots of its citizens’ lives. The contrast was a good balance. A film where the main characters talked in their own mother tongues, Ukrainian and Turkish, somehow it made the encounter and their conversations more endearing. It’s about time we expand on the romantic accents: French and Italian.
Cemal (Ushan Çakir) is at the henna party for his finacée. His mothers picked the girl for him that he knows little of. He doesn’t even know which soccer team is her favourite. In a few days they will be married. Cemal’s uncle has arranged a selamik(bachelor party), instead at the groom’s house, they are going to Ukraine, where his uncle wants Cemal to enjoy his last fling. In the tour bus heading to Kyiv, the guide tells the men to make sure to avoid those women who only have marriage in mind.
So, the first night they all descend to a dance club for their rendez-vous. Cemal is a bit uncomfortable, but his uncle and his best friend are pushing him along.
Sasha(Viktoria Spesivtseva)is heart-broken that her boyfriend can not come home to celebrate her birthday. She decides to head out and pick up the first foreign man she sees: Cemal.
Imagine, two people don’t understand each other, but gradually develop fondness between them. Is that “love” (lubish)? As cliché as the story may be, these two strangers somehow make it work. Cakir with his unkempt look, nine o’clock shadow and dreamy eyes, and Spesivtseva‘s sharp chin, and skinny figure match. They may have inadvertently also illustrated the true meaning of Silence is Golden.
Hollywood has done this type of film many times, and so has Disney, but with this unusual combo, it may not be so bad afterall.
Watch out for the undertone depicting the social and commercial interactions between people of the two countries, and their gender bias.
WATCH…refreshing yet totally cliché.