Özcan Alper’s second feature film is many things. Visually, it is a stunning work, featuring some of the finest cinematography I have seen this year and capturing the unique Turkish countryside in its many moods. It is also a love story with a twist, as one half of its central couple is absent for virtually the whole narrative. And to give the film an extra dimension and edge: it confronts the Kurdish reality within Turkey.
Future Lasts Forever is an achingly reflective road movie (with a few inside references to one of the masters of this form, Wim Wenders), tracing a young Turkish woman’s voyage to find her Kurdish lover, who has left to take up the fight of his people. Sumru (Gaye Gürsel), an ethnomusicologist armed with a tape recorder, decides to find and record the elegies, or testimonies, of Kurdish survivors of Turkish atrocities. These are eloquently delivered, mostly by women whose men have been killed — often right before their eyes. But the underlying reason for Sumru’s trip is to find the man who claimed her heart.
At her first stop, the city of Diyarbakir, Sumru meets another man who shares her interests, and soon the two find themselves spending more and more time together. But Alper confounds narrative expectations: even as this new couple continues their voyage together, romantic involvement is not his focus. Instead, his attention rests on people trapped in the past, fumbling to make sense of events that have changed their lives. The silent, enduring landscape is always there, a kind of mute witness to the living and the dead. How can such tragedy exist amid so much beauty?
A film of memories — personal, collective and historic — Future Lasts Forever marks the maturation of an exciting new Turkish talent. Alper pauses and observes, creating quiet emotional moments of devastating power as his heroine moves closer and closer to solving the mystery of her lover’s disappearance. –TIFF
Born in Artvin, Turkey, in 1975. He studied Physics and History of Science at Istanbul University. He participated in cinema workshops in Mesopotamia Culture Center and Nazım Culture House between 1996 and 2001. His feature debut AUTUMN was screened at more than 60 festivals internationally and won 33 awards. It was nominated for the European Discovery of the Year award by the European Film Academy. His other films include MOMI (2001), TIME VOYAGE WITH A SCIENTIST (2004), RHAPSODY AND MELANCHOLY IN TOKAI CITY (2005). His second feature film FUTURE LASTS FOREVER premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2011. Alper is the Artistic Director of Caucasus Film Days in Artvin and writes for the cinema magazine Yeni Film.
I couldn’t wait for this movie to hit the theatres. It finally did but unfortunately turned out to be a very minor effort compared to the directors earlier work. Clumsily written, terribly cast. I wanted to kill myself especially because of the female protagonist.