Antwerp: Older Turks shocked by multicultural movie

Antwerp: Older Turks shocked by multicultural movie

(Turquaze trailer, viewer discretion advised)

Several Turks left the theater (NL) during the premiere of the Belgian-Turkish film Turquaze in Antwerp Sunday, since the love scenes were too explicit, certainly for the first-generation Turks. Several men later returned to get the women. Turquaze, the first feature-length film by director Kadir Balci, will start playing in all theaters Wednesday.

The film is about a Turkish family in Ghent, where one of the sons has a relationship with a Belgian woman. A mostly Turkish public saw the film premiere Sunday in a theater in Antwerp. The intercultural love relationship in particular was cause for the due hostility. Some of the spectators left the hall in protest.


The Flemish Minister for Equal Opportunities, Pascal Smet (sp.a), saw the movie last week (NL) and wants as many Turkish-Flemish to watch it. Smet says that the film and the cast are a 'reflection of our immigration society' and offer answers for pertinent questions. "The director, Kadir Balci, offers with his great expressive powers, a valuable contribution to an important debate in our society. That deserves support and imitation."

The minister said he will organize showings in Brussels, Antwerp, Ghent and Beringen, specifically advertised in the Turkish community, in cooperation with KifKif, the Union of Turkish associations, and the Hot-line for Immigrant Girls and Women.

There will also be a special showing for teachers in October, and Smet said he hopes will discuss the topics brought up in the film with their classes.


The following is from several months ago (NL). I thought I had already posted it, but apparently never got around to it:

Kadir Balci, director and scriptwriter for Turquaze, a Ghent-Turkish film about the confrontation between the two cultures, showed his film yesterday to a limited - and mostly immigrant - audience. This wasn't the premiere, since the movie isn't finished yet. After the movie he asked for responses. And they were full of praise. Meryem Cosgun went to see the film and listened to the responses, including those of Flemish parliament member Fatma Pehlivan.

The main roles in Turquaze are played by Burak Balci, brother of the director, and Charlotte Vandermeerschn, who plays his friend. Johan Heldenbergh, Tine Embrechts, Maaike Cafmeyer, Katelijne Damen and Marc Verstraeten play important supporting roles in the movie.

SP.a parliament member Fatma Pehlivan: Young people should choose their own way

"It's a beautiful movie. The viewer is showered with emotions, from beginning to end. We see issues such as immigration, the dreams of the first generation and the sad return in a casket. The young people grow up between the two cultures and resist the cliches. The most beautiful thing is that they go their own way and choose what makes them most happy. This film will enthrall both groups," says the senator.

Mutlu Cetin (31): Successful film which shows good interaction

"I think it's a successful film. The interaction between the two community is rendered very well. The situation at home is very recognizable. We see how the Flemish know precious little about the Turks. Much of the film takes place in Ghent, which would appeal to all Ghent residents," he adds.

Emine Kara (22) : Realistic for both groups

"The position of the two community is rendered beautifully. People get to know the Turkish culture and customs. It's a realistic movie for both Turks and Belgians. It's also nice to see the Ghent locations filmed. When the movie is completely finished, I'm certainly go see it again."

Nurten Senguler (31): Touching and stirring movie

"I'm mixed-race, my mother is Belgian and my father Turkish. We see here the problem with which we're confronted. We also see a reflection of all the facets of life. I recognized myself in this movie. Moreover, the music is really enchanting. Well done."