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C Blok

Zeki Demirkubuz

  • Country: Turkey
  • Year: 1994
  • Language: Turkish
  • Producer: Zeki Demirkubuz
  • Screenplay: Zeki Demirkubuz
  • Runtime: 90
  • Programmes:

Zeki Demirkubuz's career-launching feature debut dissects the melancholy and repression inherent in bourgeois life in dreary apartment blocks.

AlienationDramaFamily RelationsUrban Life

screening times

    • Wednesday September 15
    • 6:00:00 PM
    • VARSITY 7
    • Sunday September 19
    • 9:15:00 AM
    • Tiff Bell LightBox 3

Note: indicates Premium Screening.

official description

Block-C, Zeki Demirkubuz’s first feature film, established the themes and aesthetics that his subsequent features would explore, but also heralded a new image of Istanbul – one concentrated upon high-rise apartment towers, new freeways and the featureless landscape of the modern middle class.

As with all of Demirkubuz’s work, and that of such kindred urban filmmakers as Wong Kar-wai and Atom Egoyan, Block-C focuses on characters troubled by compulsion, isolation and purposelessness. The film primarily follows housewife Tülay, who lives in one of the above mentioned residential “blocks” with her dispassionate husband. Early in the film, Tülay catches her young housekeeper and the son of the apartment’s caretaker in her bed. As she obsesses over the event and her own marital dissatisfaction, Halit, the taciturn younger man, starts to follow her.

Or does he? Demirkubuz is a master of keeping reality and troubled interior worlds seamlessly aligned as he unfolds the dramatic, violent and (we suspect) imagined worlds of his characters. It is left to each viewer to assign the plot’s successive building blocks – adultery, murder, a drunken party – to the realm of the real or the imagined. Demirkubuz’s insistence on quotidian environments and the refusal of any it-was-all-a-dream conventions, unhinge us within the narrative. Meanwhile, an ingeniously layered soundtrack (consisting of the rattle of modern sounds like door buzzers and blow dryers) blurs the boundaries between events.

The setting is the suburb of Ataköy, in the housing blocks built during a period of economic liberalization in the eighties that resulted in massive change to social hierarchies. Here, Tülay and her husband are part of the new middle class, but they are also isolated and essentially imprisoned. One would hardly guess that they had achieved a higher social status from the dreary cluster of foreboding apartments they call home, which are seen in deftly orchestrated, meticulously disorienting shots. As Tülay attempts several abortive spiritual escapes from her life, she repeatedly seeks the fluidity of Istanbul’s shore, only to find the water as grey and confining as the concrete that already surrounds her.

Kate Lawrie Van de Ven

director bio

Zeki Demirkubuz was born in Isparta, Turkey. He became involved in leftist politics and, after the 1980 military coup, was sentenced to a three-year prison term for his political affiliations. He later finished school and studied communications at Istanbul University before beginning filmmaking. Block-C (94) was his directorial debut. It has been followed by Innocence (97), The Third Page (99), Confession (01), Fate (01), The Waiting Room (03), Destiny (06) and Envy (09).

full credits

Principal Cast: Serap Aksoy, Zuhal Gencer, Fikret Kuskan, Selcuk Yontem, Ulku Duru, Feridun Koc
Zeki Demirkubuz
Ertunc Senkay
Nevzat Disiacik
Erkan Aktas
Serdar Keskin
Production Designer:
Ayse Akillioglu
International Sales Agent:
 Mavi Film
Production Company:
Mavi Film
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