Winter Sleep, the new film from the Turkish master Nuri Bilge Ceylan, has all the key components of a fairy tale, ‘but its magic blows in whispering breaths, raising the hairs on your arms even as you barely notice the air’s movement’ (Telegraph, UK). It is the greatly justified winner of the Palme d’Or at the 2014 Cannes Festival and the Audience Award at Sydney Film Festival.
The film largely takes place in the Hotel Othello, carved out of a rocky outcrop in the stunning Cappadocia region of Anatolia. The owner is Aydin (Haluk Bilginer), a retired stage actor of some repute. Aydin considers himself an enlightened individual and an intellectual—he pens a weekly opinion column in the local paper—but he’s not regarded in quite such a glowing light by his pretty, younger wife Nihal (Melisa Sözen), nor by his recently divorced sister Necla (Demet Akbağ), nor by some of the local villagers who are his tenants… It’s not that Aydin is a bad man so much as he’s grown inured to suffering due to his own self-righteous complacency.
There are no two ways about it, Turkish auteur Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s latest is simply a masterpiece.
“A richly engrossing and ravishingly beautiful magnum opus…”—Justin Chang, Variety
Screening at Vancity Theatre from Friday, January 16th. TICKETS