Saturday, 16 June 2012

"Kosmos" (The Guardian 15/06/12)

Kosmos (12A) 122 mins **

Tiny pendants of audiovisual poetry adorn this otherwise faintly impenetrable Turkish fable – about a thief with healing powers who arrives in a snowy, heavily fortified town populated by suspicious minds – but it really needed a hypnotist-filmmaker of Tarkovsky or Béla Tarr’s calibre to dangle them in such a way as to beguile us. Instead, writer-director Reha Erdem – following up 2006’s genuinely rapturous Times and Winds – offers a Stars in Their Eyes-level cover of these arthouse heavy hitters: there are notes of Stalker in the film’s abandoned, paper-strewn interiors, and of Solaris in its free-floating extra-terrestrial imagery, and a hero who’s part Irimias, the poet-swindler of Tarr’s masterwork Satantango, part Peter Pumpkinhead (pace XTC). Munching sugarcubes for no immediately apparent reason, lead Sermet Yeşil makes an altogether winsome savant – while his tendency to communicate with his beloved in loud squawks of birdsong proves… trying, to say the least. 

Kosmos is on selected release.

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