Local musicians’ story ‘Beynelmilel’ named best film at Ankara film fest
The military coup comedy "Beynelmilel" (International), starring Özgü Namal and Cezmi Baskın, has won the best feature-film award at the 18th Ankara International Film Festival, which ended Sunday night with an awards ceremony.
The film, co-directed by Muharrem Gülmez and Sırrı Süreyya Önder, was recognized for "depicting a very important period in Turkey's history from a certain distance, with irony and with a black comedy approach, and for carrying an extremely local topic to international ground," the festival's organizers said in a written statement Saturday.
"Beynelmilel" centers on the tragicomic stories of a group of local musicians in the southeastern province of Adıyaman in the turbulent 1980s. The film also brought one of its co-directors, Önder, the best screenplay award.
The festival, sponsored by Limak Holding and organized by the Ankara-based World Mass Media Research Foundation, screened 276 films in 10 days with a majority of its program consisting of shorts. Winners of the shorts and documentary categories were also announced, with Mehmet Selçuk Bilge's "Mr. Unhappy Meets the Girl," "Mr. Unhappy Sees a Doctor" getting the best fiction; Yasemin Aydın's "Suret" getting the best experimental short film; and Ayçe Kartal's "Beyinsiz" getting the best animated short film prize. The selection committee awarded R. Nazım Ulusoy's short film "Yır-tık" a special prize, the statement said.
Director Yüksel Aksu's debut feature "Dondurmam Gaymak" (Ice Cream, I Scream), which was Turkey's entry at this year's Oscars, won the Mahmut Tali Öngören special prize while the best director award went to Zeki Demirkubuz for his feature-film "Kader" (Destiny). The film brought two more awards to its cast members, with Vildan Atasever winning best actress and Müge Ulusoy winning best supporting actress awards.
The best actor prize went to veteran actor Haluk Bilginer for his role in the movie "Polis" (Police). The best supporting actor award went to another heavyweight, İlyas Salman, for his role in "Sis ve Gece" (Fog and the Night). "Sis ve Gece" also brought the best director of photography award to Gökhan Atılmış. The best soundtrack award went to Rahman Altın for the music he composed for "Cenneti Beklerken" (Waiting for Heaven), directed by Derviş Zaim.
The festival's selection committee, presided over by screenwriter Emine Nevin Cangür, consisted of director Tunç Başaran, academic Nejat Ulusay, film critic and cinema historian Agah Özgüç and actor Cengiz Korucu.
The festival's big winner "Beynelmilel" is set to compete in this year's Moscow International Film Festival on June 21-30. It will also be screened at the 30th Montreal World Film Festival in Canada.