With family Album director Mehmet Can Mertoglu addresses the administrative maze of the adoption in Turkey.
Mehmet Can Mertoglu evokes in FAMILY ALBUM OF the couple quarantenaire formed by Bahar (Şebnem Bozoklu) and her husband Cüneyt (Murat Kılıç, crossed in It once upon a time in Anatolia from Nuri Bilge Ceylan). The couple decided to adopt a baby in secret and make everyone believe that the child that they are going to choose is their own. Because they have the right to refuse the baby that is being proposed, which is giving rise to a scene very strong and very funny. We see, therefore, Cüneyt photograph in different places of Turkey and his wife with a fake belly. They create any room with a faux photo album of pregnancy, and therefore of the family.
Of the real motives and emotions of this couple, we will know nothing. The director has taken the party to follow in their steps to adoption, with a look of quasi-documentarian. There are never signs of affection between the husband and the wife. They are often filmed next to one of the other, or back in the car. It is sad, cold, grey. Even their way of eating or smoking compulsively is closer to a certain animality. They goinfrent and fill, do not eat not. They breathe but do not live. This impression of non-life is pretty special. It was a long time that there was not a level of empathy as close to the encephalogram flat.
FAMILY ALBUM does not answer the underlying question “what is a family? ” . Because the original script of FAMILY ALBUM is mainly a pretext to denounce the absurdity of the bureaucracy in Turkish and its messy entanglements in administrative. On a satirical form and creaky, the director filming the ways in which officials, including Bahar and Cüneyt, working…or not working. The director gives to see frozen pictures, of empty places, agents asleep on their desks. Each time, it makes a mockery of the convolutions of politeness and discussions about everything and nothing (football, real estate loan, family…) on the part of officials before addressing the real topic. Police, hospital, school, any body of the State is untouched by the piercing gaze of the director. It also denounces this pseudo-education in the society displayed, and the cultural, which does not prevent them from behaving as people not civilized, and to tell of horrors to the people, without any filter none.
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As to fill the absence of emotions, the sound of the noises that surround the characters is omnipresent. The cries of the babies and the young high school students reinforce this lack of life and humanity in the protagonists. The arrival of their baby will change their habits selfish. Even the little fold in the silence. But the pace of FAMILY ALBUM runs out of steam, because the situations of this comedy-drama are redundant. The director paints a portrait both realistic and pessimistic of today’s Turkey, which refers in many respects to an image of the offset of the countries of the years 80. Mid-way between the maintenance of culture and traditions to the utmost, and the evolution of today’s world.
The dolly camera is very slow, symbolizing the slow meander administrative in which to drown the characters. The film would almost have been called a ” Meander “, the name of the river of Turkey, Menderes, during a particularly twisty! The thought of Mehmet Can Mertoglu employs all of the references are metaphors of that time suspended : and these images focus on a funicular stopped in altitude or a moray eel in an aquarium. His vision of the world is ultimately very dark, almost desperate. What you understand the end is quite disconcerting, as the couple were finally opened to life but in a way totally at odds with the idea that we have of a family.
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• Production : Mehmet Can Mertoglu
• Scenario : Mehmet Can Mertoglu
• Main actors : Sebnem Bozoklu, Murat Kiliç
• Release Date :may 3, 2017
• Duration : 1h43min