Innocence

A man just released from prison falls for a prostitute-singer and eventually is confronted by her pimp-lover. This 1997 Turkish film is a lot better than its melodramatic plot makes it sound: director Zeki Demirkubuz films the story with a commendable austerity, blocking out the action in carefully framed static shots and keeping his camera strangely aloof from the action, as if to underscore the futility of his characters' struggles with each other and the world. A closing poem printed on-screen advises, “Be a better loser.”

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