Film Review: ‘Winter Sleep’

Haluk Bilginer lost in the landscape of ‘Winter Sleep’

The rustic hotel at the heart of Winter Sleep is a strikingly unfamiliar place: Located somewhere in Turkey’s Anatolian countryside, perched on a rocky slope, the buildings seem to emerge directly from the stone of the hillside itself. The cave-like setting might suggest we have not evolved very far from our primitive ancestors, an implication supported by the film’s portrait of psychological cruelty and selfish behavior. In the course of 196 slow minutes, we discover the world of Aydin (Haluk Bilginer, from Rosewater), who inherited the inn and is now running it after working as an actor for many years. He also inherited a bunch of local rental properties, the income from which allows him to sit around penning op-ed newspaper essays while washing his hands of the economic woes of his tenants.

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