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The Wild Pear Tree

Nuri Bilge Ceylan
Ahlat Ağacı
Turkey, Republic of Macedonia, France, Germany, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Sweden 2018 / 188’
The House That Jack Built Touch Me Not

In The Wild Pear Tree, Nuri Bilge Ceylan continues the poetics that brought him the Palme d'Or in 2014 for Winter Sleep. At the heart of the film is once again a screenplay filled with details and long conversations, which Ceylan stages with reverence worthy of the "Turkish Chekhov." The protagonist in The Wild Pear Tree is a teaching graduate named Sinan (Aydin Doğu Demirkol), who, before his final exams, returns to his native Çan in northwest Turkey. Like a visitor from a big city, he looks upon the provincial society that he left behind years earlier with a combination of aversion and tolerance. Life in Çan gradually engages him more and more, however, and his dreams of success-and of becoming a writer-turn out to be difficult to achieve. In the saturated colors of the changing seasons (especially the red and gold of autumn), this film portrait of a multigeneration family is permeated with nightmarish visions and philosophical disputes about the Quran. Though seemingly minimalistic, The Wild Pear Tree is a substantial film about rebellious youth that has to come to terms with the legacy of its forefathers.

Sebastian Smoliński

Nuri Bilge Ceylan

Nuri Bilge Ceylan was born in 1959 in Istanbul. Having first studied Electronics, he began his artistic career as a photographer. His first short film took part in the competition at Cannes, and his next two were screened at the Berlinale. The TownMay Clouds, and Distant (winner of the Grand Prix at Cannes, as well as an acting award) form a trilogy about the provinces, and escaping from them. In Climates, a story about a couple in crisis, he cast himself and his wife. Three Monkeys, a family drama about betrayal, garnered him an award for best direction at Cannes.His next film, Once Upon a Time in Anatolia, was recognized as the best film at the same festival in 2011. He won a much-awaited Palme d’Or for Winter Sleep in 2014.

Selected filmography

1999 Majowa chandra / Mayıs sıkıntısı / Clouds of May

2002 Uzak / Distant

2006 Klimaty / Iklimler / Climates

2008 Trzy małpy / Üç maymun / Three Monkeys

2011 Pewnego razu w Anatolii / Bir zamanlar Anadolu’da / Once Upon a Time in Anatolia

Cast & Crew

director Nuri Bilge Ceylan
screenplay Akin Aksu, Ebru Ceylan, Nuri Bilge Ceylan
cinematography Gökhan Tiryaki
editing Nuri Bilge Ceylan
music Mirza Tahirovic
cast Aydin Doğu Demirkol, Murat Cemcir, Bennu Yıldırımlar, Hazar Ergüçlü, Serkan Keskin, Tamer Levent, Öner Erkan
producer Zeynep Ozbatur Atakan
production Detail Film, Memento Films Production, RFF International, Sisters and Brother Mitevski, Zeyno Film
Polish distributor Stowarzyszenie Nowe Horyzonty
language Turkish
colouration colour