There is probably no other Turkish movie that depicts the sort of lives its characters are leading more powerful than Kader (Destiny). These are the lives of those that fall between the total outsiders and the traditional Turkish family women and men. Their conscience keeps them afloat, but it is also the source of their suffering. They are friends and lovers of criminals, they often hang out on the wild side, yet they struggle not to cross the border. They have a sense of responsibility, family.
Ugur meets Bekir at the opening scene of Kader. This is no trivial encounter. It sets the course of the rest of their lives, a shift towards a more dramatic life than perhaps it would otherwise be, especially for Bekir. Bekir is a kind city boy, raised to follow his small business owner dad’s footsteps. He lives with his parents, runs a furniture store his father opened for him. When he falls in love with Ugur, a troubled family’s daughter, his downward spiral start.
Ugur has always been closer to trouble than Bekir. Her family does not function at all, she finds refuge in the neighbourhood’s most turbulent guy, Zagor. She is desperately in love with him, like Bekir is for her.
Zagor can not help it. Right after completing one term in prison, he finds himself on the run from the law. Ugur runs with him. Soon they are caught and Zagor is back in jail, this time with a life sentence. Ugur, determined to stay close to him, starts to move around the country as Zagor continues to cause trouble and gets transferred from one prison to another almost every year. Bekir now a married man, follows her. He can not help it either. His love for her gives a meaning to his life.
Demirkubuz’s realistic portrayal of lives of the troubled ordinary people is reminiscent of Lee Chang-dong. The way his camera captures Turkish cities, resembles the way Chang-dong shows us South Korea. In Kader, Zeki Demirkubuz does not show us pretty pictures, cinematography’s success mostly comes from its consistency in building a realistic atmosphere around the characters. In fact it does this so remarkably that it would probably strike a many familiar chords (familiar from their own lives) for the Turkish audience.
Kader, in its home country, is already considered one of the best films that has come out of Turkish cinema. When it competed in Antalya Altin Portakal Film Festival (Turkey’s Oscars), it collected all the major awards including the best female and male actor. This is perhaps Demirkubuz at his best. Highly recommended for all audiences.
You can watch Kader (Destiny) online on Amazon Instant Video, MUBI, IndieFlix and Ximon. For more information and links check out http://turkishfilmchannel.com/kader