Hovering in a world-cinema no-man’s-land located between regional neorealism and poetic ruralism, Reha Erdem’s elliptical fable about three youngsters takes a dour look at the wonder years: If the children are indeed our future, the movie’s tiny Turkish village is in for one helluva rough time. Ömer (Özen) is beaten regularly by his sick father and dreams of helping the old man shuffle off this mortal coil. His best friend, Yakup (Kayali), develops his own patricidal fixations when his pops peeps on the local schoolteacher—the object of the boy’s puppy love. Yildiz (Iscan) is consumed with shame after catching her parents having sex; when the act produces a baby brother, she bears the burden of caring for the infant. All three of the kids go about their hardscrabble lives, waiting for adulthood to rear its equally ugly head.
The fact that Times and Winds feels like just another variation on the old innocence-lost narrative isn’t nearly as troublesome as the way Erdem liberally lifts from his stylistic ancestors. At best, the random, endless Steadicam shots set to Arvo Pärt symphonies suggest he’s boned up on his
Tarr and Tarkovsky; at worst, they’re examples of an empty formalism that adds nothing and mistakes showing off for significance.
Cast and crew