A patient tracking shot and an unforgettable aerial view of the Berlin Wall establish both the visual and literal rhetoric of this wellorchestrated documentary. Compelling black and white portraits punctuate the interviews with established Turkish Germans and newcomers. They live in the shadow of the wall and speak of ist uncanny coldness. The stoic voiceover spoken by Norbert Langer recites Frank Kafka’s text “Before the Law,” a story about a man who stands at a door and refuses entry to one particular person. Poyraz’s use of the short story implies that there is a doorman guarding access to human rights. The documentary’s protagonists rehearse the metaphor of the wall and explain how the other hostile “border crossings” relating to language, culture and religion they experience as Turkish-Germans in Berlin compromise their citizenship experience. One of the film’s staged scenes features actress Semra Uysal (GÖLGE), who plays a visiting relative expressing disdain for the grey and emotional emptiness outside the window in Berlin. (Karina Griffith)
Sema Poyraz, born in 1950 in Zonguldak, Turkey, studied Oriental studies and theatre before going on to study directing. She is a freelance author, director and actor. She has been a permanent ensemble member of the Gorki Theater in Berlin since 2019.
Production Sender Freies Berlin (SFB), Berlin, Bundesrepublik Deutschland. Director Sema Poyraz Cinematography Diethelm Trapp Editing Ulla Bleckmann Sound Jochen Schwarzat Narrator Vor dem Gesetz by Franz Kafka Narratro Norbert Langer Production Manager Martin Stachowitz Commissioning editor Carola Wedel With Semra Uysal
Films: 1977: Der kleine schwarze Fisch; Co-directed by Sofoklis Adamidis (25 Min.), Heute Homberg – morgen Du; Co-directed by Peter Petrides. 1980: Gölge; Co-directed by Sofoklis Adamidis (90 Min.). 1981: Turdag; Co-directed by Sofoklis Adamidis (50 Min.). 1985: Stille Nacht im fremden Land; Co-directed by Monika Schmid (30 Min.). 1986: Überwindbare Hindernisse (90 Min.). 1987: Halbmond und Preußenadler (45 Min.), Selbstbilder – Fremdbilder (90 Min.). 1988: Die Türhüter (30 Min.). 1991: Alles beim Alten (27 Min.), Zurück unter den Schleier (28 Min.). 1992: Im Herzen ein fernes Ziel (25 Min.). 1993: Oda (12 Min.). 1997: Amour en guerre (52 Min.).