Now in its second year and growing fast, Taste of Anatolia – Films from Turkey brings together the creative energy of a new generation of talent from Turkey. Not only does the festival provide a crucial platform, but it champions underrepresented voices by celebrating the power of independent cinema.
Founded by the charity Balık Arts, the festival prioritises films made by younger generations – or where the main cast is young – in a section called ‘Young Blood’.
The screenings will take place on Saturday 28th of September at the Cambridge Junction, and Sunday 29th of September at the Old Divinity School of St John’s College. There are twelve films in total, six shorts and six features.
Th festival organisers have coupled each short film with a feature length film in order to introduce audiences to a wide range of visual forms and styles.
This year, it includes a world premiere: Two Days /İki Gün, a short film by Nurdan Tekeoğlu, showing at midday on Sunday.
Taste of Anatolia’s founding charity, Balık Arts, was set up in 1999 to work primarily with young people through the arts and film, using the slogan ‘Social Change via Film’. The Cambridge-based organisation facilitates transnational youth exchanges, training programmes and festivals with thought-provoking films.
One of the primary reasons for launching its own film festival was to provide emerging filmmakers with screening opportunities and highlighting issues faced by young people, in addition to curating an event that reflects Anatolia’s many colours.
The charity and film festival’s ambassadors include: Tuğba Tırpan, Ahmet Baydar, Rahima Abduvalieva, and Eylem Atakav, as well as our Patrons, Selda Alkor, Cengiz Bozkurt, Çiğdem Aslan, Kadir İnanır, Bhasker Patel, and Baroness Smith.
Highlights of the featured films in this year’s festival
Morality plays out in Duvardaki Çatlak / Crack in the Wall (Sunday 29th, 2.15pm – main picture, top). Sin is such an insidious devil that it sometimes pushes people to hide behind a cloak of religion and ask God for help. But the greatest God is the conscience, which makes the final decision…
In Between/Arada (Saturday 28th, midday) revolves around Sarya and her carpenter husband, Ferhat, who has just returned from prison. This is a thought-provoking piece that raises questions about domestic life and social conduct.
The Element of Crime/Suç Unsuru (Saturday 28th, 6pm) starts one morning with Celal and Buğra, who while fast asleep. They are unexpectedly arrested by Chief Inspector Baran, on the order of a prosecutor who finds them over-eccentric. These two friends and housemates suddenly find themselves the prime suspects in a criminal investigation.
Time to Leave / Vargit Zamanı (Sunday 29th, midday) revolves around 80-year-old Hasan, who returns to Turkey after living in Germany for many years, moving back into his old wooden house in the highlands, with his cow and calf. His son Erdoğan, still in Germany, is seriously ill and his last wish is to return home. In a race against time, Hasan sets out to prepare an extra bedroom in the wooden house for his son, but things do not go to plan.
Screening venues, times and tickets
Saturday screenings will be at Cambridge Junction in J3. On Sunday, all screenings take place at The Old Divinity School, St Johns St, CB2 1TP. The box office and bar open an hour before screenings.
A festival pass for entry to all screenings is just £15, with a student concession priced at £10. Tickets can be bought online from at Cambridge Junction.
Passes can be collected at Cambridge Junction on the Saturday or at the Old Divinity School on the Sunday.
Please note, some showings have limited capacity and entry may be on a first come first served basis.
Donation Tickets are also available online if you are unable to attend the event, but would still like to show your support.