TURTLES CAN FLY
Innocent Victims of War?
Release Date: February 18, 2005
Starring: Soran Ebrahim, Hirsh Feyssal
and Avaz Latif
Audience: Teenagers and adults
Rating: Not Rated
Runtime: 95 minutes
Distributor: IFC Films
Director: Bahman Ghobadi
Producer: Bahman Ghobadi
Writer: Bahman Ghobadi
Address Comments To:Joshua Sapan, President/CEO
IFC Films/IFC Entertainment
Rainbow Media Holdings, Inc.
(Independent Movie Channel/IFC Films/Bravo Networks)
200 Jericho Quadrangle
Jericho, NY 11753
Phone: (516) 803-3000
Fax: (516) 803-4616
Satellite becomes attracted to a sad-faced, suicidal girl traveling with her armless brother and a three-year-old blind child. The girl’s brother gets visions and premonitions of the approaching war. Satellite is excited about the impending American invasion and thinks that it will improve the children’s lives. The invasion fails to stop the tragedy that is about to occur, however.
The story in TURTLES CAN FLY ends in murder and disillusionment. Not even God, or Allah, can stop the physical, emotional and spiritual devastation that the war visits upon these children. Thus, TURTLES CAN FLY contains strong humanist content that attacks both the brutality of Saddam Hussein’s regime and President George Bush’s decision to end Saddam’s brutality by invading Iraq. The basic, dominant worldview seems to be Romantic, however, because the movie appears to assume that all the children are completely innocent victims, even one prominent child who commits murder.
Despite the tragic elements in TURTLES CAN FLY, the movie has some very humorous scenes and positive moral content. One of the funniest ones is a scene where Satellite lies to the village elders about what the American cable news network, CNN, is saying about President Bush, Saddam Hussein and Iraq. The movie offers an indelible portrait of this precocious, but compassionate, young teenager, who is eventually torn by the ravages of war.
As such, the movie seems to indict all wars, including wars of liberation. It is possible to be a good Christian and a good conservative and oppose President Bush’s decision to invade Iraq, but, contrary to those people with bumper stickers saying, “War is not the answer,” sometimes war is, indeed, the answer. Ultimately, of course, salvation through Jesus Christ is the final answer for the sinfulness infecting the human race.
Regrettably, TURTLES CAN FLY is shot in a detached, disjointed manner that will dilute the story’s emotional power and moral qualities for average filmgoers, especially those who do not attend foreign language movies regularly. TURTLES CAN FLY also contains very strong occult content about a teenager’s ability to tell the future and disturbing scenes of suicide and the brutal murder of a helpless blind child. Overall, therefore, although the movie has some decent, positive qualities, MOVIEGUIDE® cannot recommend it.
TURTLES CAN FLY ends in murder and disillusionment. Not even God can stop the physical, emotional and spiritual devastation that the war against Saddam visits upon these children. Thus, TURTLES CAN FLY has strong humanist content and a Romantic worldview that attacks both the brutality of Saddam Hussein’s regime and President George Bush’s decision to end it. The movie also contains very strong occult content and disturbing scenes of suicide and the murder of a blind child.