The Edge of Heaven

"OK"

The Edge of Heaven Review


Head-On director Fatih Akin turns his focus from the intimacy of a botched marriage of convenience between a lapsed conservative Muslim and a hard-drinking Turk in his previous film to The Edge of Heaven, a globetrotting human-rights drama about deported Turkish renegades and the lesbians and bookshop owners who love them.

Awarded the Cannes prize for screenwriting at last year's ceremonies, Akin's new world is sparked by a moral dilemma that plagued his lost Muslim girl in Head-On. Yeter (Nursel Köse), "Jessy" to her johns, is a faithful Muslim despite her prostitute day job. The local fundamentalists bully her on the bus and stare daggers at her on the boulevard. After a few times servicing Ali (Tuncel Kurtiz), an elderly customer, she's asked to come and live with him as a roommate and periodic sex slave. Köse's face, fitted with age and a wincing grief, becomes a hardened casket when she's with Ali but melts into tender matriarchy when she's introduced to Nejat (the great Baki Davrak), Ali's German-language professor son.

The tenderness she shows Nejat accounts for the professor's unshakable diligence in finding her lost daughter when Yeter dies unexpectedly. The young professor makes his way to Turkey and buys a German bookstore, hanging flyers and other such public displays in the hope of finding Yeter's daughter. Little does he know that her daughter Gül (Nurgül Yesilçay, an actress who can play sexy and self-serious within the same note) has just made her way to Germany after escaping a group of Turkish radicals. She makes her way to a university and falls into the bed of a Spanish-English major named Charlotte (Patrycia Ziolkowska). A scene where they share a joint drag is one of Akin's most erotic shots to date.

Gül is found during a routine pull-over and sent back to Turkey with Charlotte hot on her tracks, much to the chagrin of Charlotte's mother (Hanna Schygulla). Charlotte befalls a tragedy right as she begins renting a room from Nejat, causing the mother to come in contact with the professor... and around and around we go. Certainly, the crossed wires of this we-are-all-connected melodrama are more intriguing and engaging than the this-is-racism pandering of Crash and Babel, but the content comes off as light. Nejat's quoting of Goethe's challenging thoughts on revolution points rather blatantly to the pains of Gül's revolt.

The intersections are nicely played but the reasoning behind them seems near-empty. Blessed with a first-rate cast, Akin's ability to keep interest is exercised to great ends but his attempts at wringing intimacy out of this broad palette would seem to be a fool's charge. The Edge of Heaven flirts with close-to-the-vest perceptions of culture, sexuality, and identity but never indulges in them. Emotions remain on the sleeve, as does history.

Aka Auf der anderen Seite.



The Edge of Heaven

Facts and Figures

Run time: 116 mins

In Theaters: Thursday 27th September 2007

Box Office USA: $0.6M

Budget: $3.8M

Distributed by: Strand

Production compaines: Corazón International, Anka Film

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 89%
Fresh: 67 Rotten: 8

IMDB: 7.9 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer: , Klaus Maeck, Andreas Thiel, Jeanette Wurl

Starring: Nurgül Yeşilçay as Ayten Öztürk, Baki Davrak as Nejat Aksu, Tuncel Kurtiz as Ali Aksu, as Susanne Staub, Patrycia Ziolkowska as Lotte Staub, Nursel Köse as Yeter, Yelda Reynaud as Emine

Also starring:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Their Finest Movie Review

Their Finest Movie Review

Skilfully written, directed and acted, this offbeat British period film tells a story that catches...

Unforgettable Movie Review

Unforgettable Movie Review

With heavy echoes of trashy thrillers like Fatal Attraction, this movie overcomes its painfully simplistic...

The Belko Experiment Movie Review

The Belko Experiment Movie Review

The kill-or-die scenario that this movie hinges on isn't something new; it's been used in...

The Fate of the Furious Movie Review

The Fate of the Furious Movie Review

With the more dumbed-down title Fast & Furious 8 outside of North America, this overcrowded...

A Quiet Passion Movie Review

A Quiet Passion Movie Review

British writer-director Terence Davies (The Deep Blue Sea) is an expert at digging beneath the...

The Sense of an Ending Movie Review

The Sense of an Ending Movie Review

Julian Barnes' Booker Prize-winning novel is adapted into a remarkably intelligent, gently involving film anchored...

The Boss Baby Movie Review

The Boss Baby Movie Review

There isn't a lot of subtlety in this madcap animated comedy, which is more aimed...

Advertisement
City of Tiny Lights Movie Review

City of Tiny Lights Movie Review

After the latest incarnation of Dredd, director Pete Travis shifts gears drastically for this complex...

Going in Style Movie Review

Going in Style Movie Review

This is only technically a remake of the iconic 1979 film starring movie icons George...

Graduation Movie Review

Graduation Movie Review

Romanian filmmaker Cristian Mungiu (4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days) recounts another staggeringly detailed...

Ghost in the Shell Movie Review

Ghost in the Shell Movie Review

This sci-fi thriller is so visually stunning that it deserves to be mentioned in the...

Free Fire Movie Review

Free Fire Movie Review

Basically a 90-minute shoot-out, there isn't a lot to this movie. British filmmaker Ben Wheatley...

Life Movie Review

Life Movie Review

Like a mash-up of Alien and Gravity, this ripping sci-fi horror movie is very effective...

The Lost City of Z Movie Review

The Lost City of Z Movie Review

Based on a true story, it's the historical aspect of these events that holds the...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.