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THE WILD PEAR TREE

12:30   4:00   7:30

MUST END TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 12

DIRECTED AND EDITED BY NURI BILGE CEYLAN

Famed Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan (ONCE UPON A TIME IN ANATOLIA) has made a leisurely, expansive, often humorous movie, essentially about a dysfunctional father-son relationship, that posits conflicting personalities against one another: a sybaritic father and his earnest son, a struggling young writer and a popular middle-aged novelist, a literary wanna-be and a would-be corporate patron, two religious figures who parse fate and causality, myth and reality – in what amounts to “a mesmerizing verbal fugue” (Jay Weissberg, Variety). These alternatingly funny and poignant engagements are set within a dream-like world of lush natural settings and disturbing encounters (a vampire-like kiss) and images (a sleeping infant, its face covered with ants).

TURKEY/FRANCE/GERMANY/BULGARIA   2018    188  MINS.  IN TURKISH WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES    CINEMA GUILD

Reviews

“The content of these discourses is variously metaphysical, ethical, literary and romantic… there is a restlessness, a tension that pushes nearly every moment toward an invisible precipice of violence. Ceylan infuses the film with elements of absurdism and magic realism… leavened by hints of grim comedy and sharp, if subtle, social criticism.”
– A.O. Scott, The New York Times

“5 STARS! A gentle, humane, beautifully made and magnificently acted movie. Garrulous, humorous and lugubrious in [Ceylan’s] unmistakable and very engaging style. Another deeply satisfying, intelligent piece of filmmaking from Ceylan.”
– Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian (UK)

“Naturalistic and well-observed. Even as Mr. Ceylan’s film points to difficulties, it refuses to heed simplifications and stereotypes… Mr. Ceylan rewards viewers’ patience with striking dialogue, scenes and landscapes. THE WILD PEAR TREE is a rich and poetic film that manages to do two difficult things at once: it explores the psyche of a country, and it reminds viewers everywhere of the trials of growing up.”
– S.J., The Economist

“MASTERFUL. Ceylan and his fellow scriptwriters (wife Ebru Ceylan along with Akin Aksu, also acting) develop astonishingly complex spoken recitatives that weave philosophy, religious tradition, and ethics together into a mesmerizing verbal fugue.”
– Jay Weissberg, Variety

“Perceptive and profound. If only more family dramas took such care to get the details right… (The film) maintains a visual sophistication unparalleled in international cinema.”
– Eric Kohn, IndieWire

“Ceylan presses his fondness for dialogue and debate in new directions, effectively structuring the first half of this expansive film as a series of extended, tense, and often hilarious conversations about literature, popularity, love, modernity — issues central to the role of an artist today, especially in a place like Turkey.”
– Bilge Ebiri, Village Voice