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.
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.