In a remote village in eastern Turkey, an art teacher named Samet (Deniz Celiloglu) enters his fourth and final year at an undesirable state-mandated teaching post. Before he leaves, however, he will have to navigate two tricky relationships: the first with Sevim (Ece Bagci), a young student who accuses him of inappropriate behaviour and kickstarts a formal investigation; the second with Nuray (Merve Dizdar), a fellow educator and potential love interest, whose political engagement challenges his well-worn apathy. Both will push him into existential crisis, forcing him to reconsider his place in the world. With About Dry Grasses, Palme d’Or-winning filmmaker Nuri Bilge Ceylan delivers his richest, most expansive film yet. Against the harsh climes and forbidding landscapes of the Eastern Anatolian steppes, the Turkish director unfolds a philosophically profound tale of idealism and inaction, anchored by commanding performances from Dizdar (who won the Best Actress prize at Cannes) and Celiloglu. Novelistic in scale and yet startlingly intimate, this is a cinematic experience like no other.
Best Actress, Cannes 2023
Mediha Didem Türemen
Alexandre Mallet-Guy, Janine Jackowski, Jonas Dornbach, Maren Ade, Nadir Öperli, Kristina Börjeson, Anthony Muir, Sébastien Beffa
Akin Aksu, Ebru Ceylan, Nuri Bilge Ceylan
Cevahir Şahin, Kürşat Üresin
Oğuz Atabaş, Nuri Bilge Ceylan
Philip Timofeyev, Giuseppe Verdi
Nuri Bilge Ceylan
Nuri Bilge Ceylan was born in Istanbul on January 26, 1959. In 1976, he started studying chemical engineering at the Istanbul Technical University, At the end of 1993, he started shooting his first short film, Koza. The film was screened in Cannes in May 1995 and became the first Turkish short film selected for the Cannes Film Festival. Uzak (2003) won the Grand Prix and the Best Actor Award for the two leads at Cannes in 2003. His next films all won awards at Cannes. In 2006, Climates won the FIPRESCI International Critics’ Award, in 2008 Three Monkeys won the Best Director Award and in 2011 Once Upon a Time in Anatolia won the Grand Prix again. In 2014, his seventh feature film Winter Sleep won the Palme d’Or and the FIPRESCI International Press Award. With The Wild Pear Tree, in 2018, he returned to the Official Selection in Competition at the Cannes Film Festival.
Filmography: Three Monkeys (2008); Once Upon a Time in Anatolia (2011); Winter Sleep (2014); The Wild Pear Tree (2018)
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Veteran director Marco Bellocchio (The Traitor) returns with a passionate historical drama about a Jewish child abducted by Pope Pius IX in 1865 on the grounds that he had been secretly baptized. This is a rich, operatic film that resonates strongly.
In an Arctic research facility, a mysterious creature is found and captured, finding unexpected love with a woman working under the organization. Portrayed through polished ballet, Creature tells the story of unfettered emotion through kinetic movement.
The Royal Hotel
In Kitty Green's harrowing follow up to The Assistant, Hanna (Julia Garner) and Liv (Jessica Henwick) are backpacking across Australia. Running low on funds, they decide tending bar in an Outback mining town could be a lark. This proves a mistake.
In her seventies Agnieszka Holland has made a ferocious, emotionally charged film about the brutal treatment of refugees arriving over the Polish land border from Belarus. This is a vehement denunciation of resurgent fascism and utterly compelling cinema.
They Shot the Piano Player
The fate of a prodigious Brazilian samba pianist murdered in Argentina in 1976 fuels this animated docu-fiction from the team who gave us the Academy Award-nominee Chico & Rita. Jeff Goldblum voices the writer who digs into Francisco Tenório Jr's story.
I Am Sirat
I Am Sirat is a personal documentary about Sirat, a transwoman in India, who lives a dual life. While supported by a queer network of friends in Delhi, Sirat reverts to the closet at home as she’s forced to maintain a son’s familial and cultural responsibilities.
The Teachers' Lounge
When a grade 6 student is accused of theft, idealistic young math teacher Ms Nowak decides to set up a sting to find the true culprit... with disastrous results. This buzzy Berlin film festival title is an ethics master class.
Evil Does Not Exist
After the international success of Drive My Car, Ryusuke Hamaguchi quietly made this small-scale independent film, a work of simplicity and grace about a rural community and the developers who want to built a "glamping" retreat in the woods.
In the heart of Buenos Aires, two bank clerks live a gray, mind-numbingly routine existence—that is, until one of them commits a crime that upends both their lives. Invigorating, precisely composed, and endlessly inventive.
Four Little Adults
Upon learning of her husband's year long affair, Juulia proposes an open marriage free of secrets. As a polyamory guide becomes their bible, Juulia falls in love with someone new, filling their journey in polyamory with love, compassion, and compromise.
Just the Two of Us
Beginning as a sunny romance, this film slowly, subtly becomes a defiant feminist drama. When Blanche meets Greg at a seaside party, she’s quickly won over by his confidence and charm, but once they’re married, he reveals a much darker side.
Close to You
In his first feature film role since 2017, Elliot Page delivers a deeply felt and nuanced performance as a young man reuniting with his family for the first time since his transition, four years earlier.
During the chaotic preparations for the birthday of her terminally ill father, a seven-year-old girl finds herself caught amid a complex adult world interspersed with a sense of change. A Buñuelian class study keyed to the interior life of a child.
About Dry Grasses
In a remote village in eastern Turkey, an art teacher enters his fourth and final year at a state-mandated teaching post, but finds himself having to navigate two tricky relationships which force him into existential crisis.
A stimulating and cathartic docu-drama from Academy-Award nominee, Tunisian filmmaker Kaouther Ben Hania, about a mother who lost two teenage daughters when they fled to Libya to fight for ISIS.
How to Have Sex
Sixteen-year-old Tara and her two best friends arrive to a Greek party town ready to let their hair down. But while Tara is indeed down for some summer fun, her boundaries keep getting trampled on by those closest to her.
Do Not Expect Too Much From the End of the World
Radu Jude takes two days in the life of a stressed Romanian p.a. and gives us an urgent, pissed off, sourly funny polemic on the state of late capitalism. Exploitation, discrimination and hypocrisy are his targets; dialectics are his dynamite.
The Monk and the Gun
On the eve of the Kingdom of Bhutan’s momentous transition to democracy in 2006, a monk sets off on a mysterious quest for his master, while an American collector arrives in a small town searching for a rare, valuable artefact.