Thursday, July 24, 2008
Posted by Vignesh
Loneliness. My loneliness is where i take refuge. My loneliness is where i seclude myself from all the chaos. My loneliness is where i reinvent the process of living. My loneliness is my greatest boon, I love being a loner, but there is always the other me. The other one who balances the loner, the one deals with the chaos, the one who just lives. Whenever I get into the mighty web of loneliness I always know that sometime when i come out of it, life will be waiting for me, there will be people eager to speak and shed love, then I kill the loner for a while and I become a social animal like the rest of us. But what if someday I am trapped in my web of loneliness and there is no way out? What if my loneliness turns out into my greatest curse? what if I become the only one in my world? what if the mask becomes my face? NO. I cant even think about it!. Socially induced loneliness sucks out the very essence from living. Each of us are have a book the book called life and there are some pages that we always prefer to skip. Those pages filled with the deepest and unexplored emotions. I read them today, A movie made me read it. UZAK(2003) a Turkish film by Nuri Bilge Ceylan contains excerpts of hidden pages from the book called life. It deals with the lives of two lonesome men who are forced into the cavities of a painfully isolated existence.
Yusuf comes to the city from the country side. The factory has failed in his village and he has no means to earn. He foolishly believes that he can find a high paying job in the city at the shipping yard and save his family from the cruel hands of poverty. He comes to Istanbul on a bleakly winter day in search of his distant cousin who is now a well-of photographer. Mahmut the cousin is a lonely man, he is divorced from his wife and lives all alone in his apartment. He has no friends or he doesn't have an active social life. He gets on with hookers, smokes, drinks and photographs the dusky beauty of Turkey. The two men slowly become isolated companions of the house.As days pass by Mahmut begins to loathe his cousin, berating him for everything from failing to flush the toilet to the smell of his cheap cigarettes, he feels that Yusuf is disturbing his privacy and gradually grows furious at the disorder that has come into his life. As the "for a few days" job search extends for weeks, Mahmut gets annoyed at Yusuf's presence. Meanwhile Yusufs job search doesn't turn fruit full, he is deeply hurt, he knows that he has become an unwanted guest but he has no choices, he roams around smoking cheap cigarettes. Both men start living a distant life in the same room, they are unable to connect with themselves and with the society. They smoke, they wander, they live in a vacuum.When things get worse in Mahmut's personal life they enter into a shabby confront which makes Yusuf leave the house without informing his cousin. The movie ends with Mahmut being seen sitting on a bench in a gray, cold day, smoking the leftover cigarette cheap of Yusuf and the deep silence on screen gives a number of meanings, one of which is Muhmut finally is disturbed as he has lost the only companion in live, with no one even to annoy him, he has finally become the same old loner which he was before.
The two men in their own way portray the pain of being lonesome and helpless. In the eyes of Yusuf we could sense the sufferings undergone by all unemployed men, who are pushed into the verge of rejection, who remain defenseless to the abusive attacks of the society, who long for love and who are always ignored by women. The pain he undergoes when he gets rejected by women and the complex that he develops over it are disturbing. And Mahmut remains as a deep physiological study of what happens to a man who is exhausted by life.The cinematography is a strong point, handled by Ceylan himself it portrays the disturbing beauty of the grey snow. Winter which makes us confine in our homes is aptly chosen as the theme. Silence is the language of the film. With some deeply moving performances, an efficient screenplay and a disturbing camera work UZAK can be one of the most important films of the decade.
Let me end up by narrating what i feel the most disturbing and defining moment of the film "In a scene after Yusuf goes to bed, Mahmut closes the door and secretly decides to watch porn, with the fear that Yusuf may enter the room at any moment, his eyes are reluctantly fixed on the closed door, on the other side behind the closed door Yusuf secretly uses Mahmuts phone to converse with his sick mom, but his eyes are fixed on the closed door fearing Mahmut". Both men hold their secrets behind the closed door.Hence the closed door symbolically defines the dual faces that people portray to each other.The behavior in the absence. The "real" person can always be found behind the door. What is behind our doors remains as the most kept secret.Hence this movie which is an ordinary story of ordinary people asks us a question, which we always prefer to parry, which in deeper thought becomes a nightmare for many, but the question remains. What does it mean to be really alone? How does it look like?
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Labels: World (of) Cinema ·