In Deliviran, a village near Urfa close to the Syrian border, Hidir’s chief is involved in smuggling and gets shot. Hidir tries to stay out of illegal activities but circumstances contrive to push him in the opposite direction until he accepts to take a herd of sheep across the border.
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Stark landscapes, jagged shootouts, a clash with modernity—this is a Turkish Western, and a good deal like our own. The cinematic/narrative construction isn't seamless, and the ending could use a subtler touch. But the way it sketches the relations between its community and the authorities trying to force them to modernize is as thoughtful, sensitive, and—yes—subtle as any genre film we were home-growing over here.
THE LAW OF THE BORDER is like a narcotic experience. Also more than a little like a psychedelic experience. But it isn't really anything like the narcotic/psychedelic experiences other movies that offer narcotic/psychedelic experiences have offered me. I guess really it does beyond-commendably what first turned me on about world cinema as a youngster: it introduces me to strange places and slightly alien mindsets.
In a Turkish border town, villagers struggle to survive through any means necessary, including smuggling. A school brings the hope of a better future for their children, but conflict and tension lead to a violent ending.