Bir zamanlar Anadolu'da


Director's Statement

Life in a small town is like a journey in the middle of the steppes. The sense that “something brand new and different” might emerge beyond every hill, and yet the monotonous roads, all resembling each other, thinning, twisting, vanishing or stretching ... It might very well be that what moved me to make this film is primarily that the environment the story takes place in and the web of relationships seem to have the potential to explore what lies beyond the facade of the human spirit and personality. In the film, while trailing a violent and creepy murder that takes place in a small town, it is expressed how the “common social spirit” takes command of the individual, how the darkness of each individual evolves into a “common darkness”, how everyone participates consciously or not throughout the murder process, and the unpredictability of the balance and normalization which comes after the predictable ending. The individuals of small towns, while trying to find ways to satisfy their “instinctive drives,” continue, on the other hand, to be influenced by every other person or group in all layers of the society they live in. Especially while the bureaucrats (district governor, prosecutor, doctor, chief of police, etc.) ruthlessly continue the “authority and power” struggle with each other, they also have to have their “authority” accepted by the locals who always consider them as “guests” and themselves as the permanent “hosts.”

Cast & Crew

Directed by: Nuri Bilge Ceylan

Written by: Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Ercan Kesal, Ebru Ceylan

Produced by: Zeynep Özbatur Atakan

Cinematography: Gökhan Tiryaki

Editing: Bora Gökşingöl, Nuri Bilge Ceylan

Production Design: Dilek Yapkuöz Ayaztuna

Cast: Taner Birsel (Prosecutor Nusret), Muhammet Uzuner (Doctor Cemal), Yilmaz Erdoğan (Commissar Naci)

Nominations and Awards

  • European Director 2012
  • European Cinematographer – Prix Carlo Di Palma 2012
  • Feature Film Selection 2012