Turtles Can Fly

Turtles Can Fly

name = Turtles Can Fly

caption = "Turtles Can Fly" film poster
writer = Bahman Ghobadi
starring = Soran Ebrahim,
Avaz Latif
director = Bahman Ghobadi
producer = Babak Amini, Hamid Ghobadi, Hamid Ghavami, Bahman Ghobadi
distributor = IFC Films (USA)
released = September 10, 2004
runtime = 95 min
language = Kurdish
budget =
imdb_id = 0424227

"Turtles Can Fly" is a 2004 film written and directed by the Kurdish filmmaker from Iran Bahman Ghobadi, with notable theme music composed by Hossein Alizadeh. It was the first film to be made in Iraq since the fall of Saddam Hussein.


The film is set in a Kurdish refugee camp on the Iraqi-Turkish border on the eve of the US invasion of Iraq. Thirteen-year-old Satellite (Soran Ebrahim) is known for his installation of dishes and antennae for local villages who are looking for news of Saddam Hussein and for his limited knowledge of English. He is the dynamic, but manipulative leader of the children, organizing the dangerous but necessary sweeping and clearing of the minefields.

The industrious Satellite arranges trade-ins for unexploded mines. He falls for an orphan named Agrin (Avaz Latif), a sad-faced girl traveling with her disabled, but smart brother Henkov, who appears to have the gift of clairvoyance. The siblings care for a toddler, whose connection to the pair is discovered as harsh truths are revealed.

Critiques of the film

The film however, has been critiqued by many, including well known left wing intellectuals like Tariq Ali, who says that despite a beautiful story line, the film is one sided and seems to support the American invasion of Iraq. Significantly, the film is silent about what happens to 'Satellite' after the Americans finally land in their refuge camp. Other critics consider that the film reflects the true sentiment of the Iraqi people who despised the brutal dictatorship of Saddam Hussein, in particular the Kurds who were so mercilessly exterminated by Saddam's regime, and felt liberated by the American forces, as were the Europeans half a century ago.



# Glass Bear, Best Feature Film and Peace Film Award, Berlin International Film Festival, 2005.
# Golden Seashell, Best Film, San Sebastián International Film Festival, 2004.
# Special Jury Award, Chicago International Film Festival, 2004.
# International Jury and Audience Awards, São Paulo International Film Festival, 2004.
# La Pieza Award, Best Film, Mexico City International Contemporary Film Festival, 2005.
# Audience Award, Rotterdam International Film Festival, 2005.
# Golden Prometheus, Best Film, Tbilisi International Film Festival, 2005.
# Aurora Award, Tromsø International Film Festival, 2005.
# Golden Butterfly, Isfahan International Festival of Films for Children, 2004.
# Gold Dolphin, Festróia - Tróia International Film Festival, 2005

External links

* [http://www.dailymotion.com/kazuyagoku/video/x48u8r_film-kurde-musique-de-moein-persan_music An extract with music]
*imdb title|id=0424227|title=Turtles Can Fly
* [http://www.variety.com/review/VE1117924881?categoryid=31&cs=1 Review by Robert Koehler] , Variety.
* [http://www.filmjournal.com/filmjournal/reviews/article_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=1000790301 Review by Maria Garcia] , Film Journal International.
* [http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/04/22/AR2005062901091.html Review by Ann Hornaday] , Washington Post
* [http://www.newyorker.com/critics/cinema/?050207crci_cinema Review by Anthony Lane] , "The New Yorker".
* [http://www.calendarlive.com/movies/reviews/cl-et-turtles18feb18,1,1057981.story Review by Carina Chocano] , Los Angeles Times.
* [http://www.slantmagazine.com/film/film_review.asp?ID=1413 Review by Nick Schager] , Slant Magazine.
* [http://www.villagevoice.com/film/0507,winter,61070,20.html Review by Jessica Winter] , Village Voice.
* [http://arts.guardian.co.uk/fridayreview/story/0,12102,1384426,00.html Review by Peter Bradshaw] , The Guardian.
* [http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/reviews/movies/TURTLESCANFLY.DTL&type=movies Review by Ruthe Stein] , San Francisco Chronicle.

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