Tur­tles Can Fly

The Kurdish Globe - - NEWS - H.G. Has­san

Tur­tles Can Fly is a Kur­dish Film di­rected by Bah­man Ghobadi and re­leased in 2004. The film takes place in a Kur­dish-Turk­ish refugee camp dur­ing the Amer­i­can in­va­sion of Iraq. The thir­teen year old boy, Satel­lite (played by the amaz­ing child ac­tor So­ran Ebrahim), is the il­lus­tri­ous leader of a group of chil­dren, or­phans, who earn money in the camp by clear­ing mine­fields.

Satel­lite is fa­mous for his in­stal­la­tion of satel­lite dishes on people's homes so that they can learn of news on Sad­dam Hussien. The cal­cu­lat­ing yet vig­or­ous Satel­lite is the leader of a band of chil­dren that range from The Boy with no Arms who clears mines by re­mov­ing the fir­ing pin with his mouth to the bit­ter and jaded Agrin and to the in­no­cent Risa.

Each child shad­owed in a his­tory of de­spair and angst, each child giv­ing their own story to tell. Tur­tles Can Fly is not just a movie about the suf­fer­ing of Kur­dish people dur­ing the US in­va­sion, it is a film that brings the viewer into the life of a child, a film that lets the view­ers look through their eyes, un­der­stand their in­no­cent naivety and watch it be ripped away.

It is a film that tells no lies and holds no favourites, it only does what ev­ery good film is sup­posed to- it tells it's story.

As Roger Ebert once said, "I wish ev­ery­one who has an opin­ion on the war in Iraq could see "Tur­tles Can Fly." That would mean ev­ery­one in the White House and in Congress, and the news­pa­per writ­ers, and the TV pun­dits, and the ra­dio talkers, and you — es­pe­cially you, be­cause you are read­ing this and they are not."

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