A DESERVED KISS
Producer: Asena Bulduk (Rubikon Film)
Murat Uğurlu was born in 1987 in Ankara. After studying archeology and journalism, he continued his education in Polish National Film School Łódź. He wrote and directed several awarded short films. After moving back to Turkey, he started to work in commercial industry as a director. Besides film works, he is a novelist. His critically acclaimed book ”Here is Same” was published in 2013. Currently he based in İstanbul and developing his debut feature film, ‘’A Deserved Kiss’’
On an evening in summer, deep down inside the forests of METU (Middle East Technical University, Ankara) echoes of tens of people shouting: ”CAN! CAN!” A student of summer school, Can (8) was disappeared mysteriously. Was he kidnapped or did he escape voluntarily? This very disappearance leads to various changes in the lives of six different characters.
Yasemin (23) is the leader in charge of Can’s class during summer school. While studying engineering, she works for pocket money in summer school for children. At the same time, she is preparing for acting school auditions, keeping it as a secret from her traditional family. When her roommate in the dormitory and best friend Sevil insists, Yasemin has no choice but to take a secretive journey into the night. In the slums, she meets an Iranian poet who escaped illegally from his country. Poet, for that one night, becomes Yasemin’s, Uncle Vanya.
Nejat (45) is a famous philosophy scholar with a half-genius, half-deranged. The day he learned that his cancer covered all his body; he incidentally meets an old friend, Metin, at the hospital. They talk in a traditional Ankara patisserie after 25 years… At that point, two young high school lovers, thinking nobody sees them, follow each other to the toilet of the patisserie. This little escapade would cause huge indignation both in the small and traditional Turkish patisserie and in Nejat’s resentful soul.
Old and grumpy physics professor Asude (68) has been a nightmare for her students. Even her own daughter and grandchild should conform to her rules in order to see her. Although she has a hard time getting along with people, she loves her dog Oz. The day she puts Oz to sleep, she would discover uncharted territories in family, love, and physics.
Edip (30) is a war veteran who works in the canteen at METU. He obsessively thinks about one simple question: ‘’How do these rich people make that amount of money?” While he is delivering food to summer school, a luxurious sports car cuts in, steps on the gas and leaves the scene. Edip thinks the driver consciously did this disrespectful act. This is a rich spoiled kid in his early 20s. By a chance, Edip encounters with him again. Inevitably they start to fight. Then Edip gets fired from work. The same night, after a long and disillusioned journey, Edip finds himself holding a knife and face a mysterious white peacock on the road lit by car headlights.
Barış (43) is a proud academician, who fails to find a job for a long time because of his solid political correctness. He is in depression and his marriage has been on shaky grounds. While wandering around the city in desperation, he meets a group of young rock musicians. For a short period of time, he thinks he is happy – just like the old days. After his failure to get “rocket cake” for his son Can’s birthday and an unsuccessful sex attempt, he returns home as a lost soul.
During this time, Can has been waiting his “deserved kiss” with patience in the woods until a mysterious white peacock appears.
Due to my mother’s work, I have lived at the campus of Middle East Technical University (METU) in Ankara since I was three years old. I have spent the following twenty years on campus. In short, my ‘’ motherland’’ is METU. This is a place like an isolated island where Turkey stuck between East and West crystallizes and were diverse, colorful, and sorrowful souls live together.
I was actually working on different scripts for my first feature film. Then at some point, memories of my childhood started to dictate themselves. When I sat at the table, “motherland” appeared in my mind with all the details.
Of course, the value of a film is not related to its connection to the reality. I, for one, do not seek shelter in nostalgia or do not aim to revitalize the past through the help of cinema. My aim to make an honest fiction drama based on the characters and places I know well.
I wanted to create a multiple narrative following six different characters rather than one protagonist in order to transfer the simple poetic of life into the cinematic language. We’re not following a large dramatic artery but the capillaries of it, having the sense of “That’s life, I guess.”
Lastly, I would like to refer to some great ”multiple narrative” novels that inspired me… Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer, As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner, The Waves by Virginia Woolf, Noontime in Yenisehir by Sevgi Soysal and Emigrants by W.G Sebald.