Dir. Maurice Pialat. 1964, 74 mins. 35mm. In 1964, Pialat and cinematographer Willy Kurant (Masculin Féminin) headed to Turkey, where they produced a series of six lyrical shorts dedicated to the country’s history and people. Subjects included the poetry of Nazim Hikmet (Maître Galip), the history of the city of Istanbul generally and its Golden Horn peninsula in particular (Byzance, Istanbul, Bosphore and La corne d’or), and the wrestling competition at Pehlivan (Pehlivan). Prefiguring Pialat’s later shorts on French regional subjects, these films offer a valuable glimpse of the artist honing his style, and an insight into the particular relationship between documentary and fiction in his filmmaking.
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