Climates

"Excellent"

Climates Review


While filming his third feature, Distant, director Nuri Bilge Ceylan awoke one morning to see it snowing heavily in his home country of Turkey. He quickly called up his crew and got them down to the riverbanks, where a few parts of the movie were filmed and where he had planned to end his picture. His main actor runs down to the waterfront as well and just stood looking at an aged boat trapped in the river as the snow pours down. It's an indelible image that came, like few other cinematic moments, completely by chance.With his fourth film (the second with American distribution), Ceylan doesn't need any acts of god or great moments of chance. Where Distant took his insular, Antonioni-imagery-laden style to its most extreme ends, Climates has a more natural progression in both story and style.Isa (Ceylan) has taken a short leave from his job as a professor to take pictures of structures near the Aegean coast. He takes along his longtime girlfriend, Bahar (Ebru Ceylan, the director's off-screen wife), who stares at him one afternoon, realizing that she resents him and is bored with him. After a dangerous motorcycle accident, Bahar leaves Isa on a bus to god knows where. Back in Istanbul, where they lived together, Isa returns to teaching and rekindles a stunningly rough love affair with a woman he used to see. Realizing the futility of this relationship, he heads to the snowy Eastern part of Turkey to find Bahar and hopefully convince her to come home with him.Climates opens up a few doors that Distant kept closed. Ceylan's psychology in Distant was that of a man unable to open up, insular and polarized to even the most silent of houseguests. That feeling of being closed-off still lingers in Climates but Ceylan's imagery has become more daring and full-bodied. Bahar's dream of being suffocated by sand gives a deeper resonance to her feelings for Isa than any amount of pushy catharsis would, especially so early in the film. His use of climates (duh!) also employs some interesting mirroring; the more somber the weather, the more desperate Isa becomes.Shockingly, not much has been spoken about Climates' singular sex scene between Isa and his old flame. Ravenous and brutal, the scene (shot with minimal cuts) might be the most realistic depiction of "angry sex" ever to be put to celluloid. Ceylan uses the scene as a way of exploring what Isa might have been missing with Bahar, but also shows why he no longer is in need of a relationship like this. Antonioni comparisons aside, these fixation shots that make up a great deal of the film are strung together expertly to excavate the troubles in a fleeting romance that seems unable to be resuscitated.Snow will always look good on camera, but in Ceylan's eye, it conveys isolation and emotional frost better than anything else. Watching Isa (the name alone conjures up feelings of remoteness) stand on a bridge as he readies to return to Istanbul is enough to rip your heart in half. Ultimately, Climates might not connect with most people's memories of breaking up; the assumption is they would be a hell of a lot louder. However, anyone who has known what it's like to feel regret and loneliness wrap around you like a scarf will no doubt feel a kindred spirit at work. That, for damn sure, didn't come about by chance.Aka Iklimler.


Climates

Facts and Figures

In Theaters: Friday 20th October 2006

Distributed by: Zeitgeist Films

Production compaines: Imaj, Pyramide Films, Co Production

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 73%
Fresh: 48 Rotten: 18

IMDB: 7.3 / 10

Cast & Crew

Producer: Zeynep Özbatur

Starring: Ebru Ceylan as Bahar, as Isa, Nazan Kirilmis as Serap, Mehmet Eryilmaz as Mehmet, Arif Asçi as Arif, Can Özbatur as Guven

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