The Mine is an interference in the understanding of Yeşilçam.
The Mine works well on two levels. Its a story of mining, that precarious profession offering high movie drama when the expected cave-in takes place. But it is also the chronicle of a strike, a necessary measure a group of miners take to prevent such disasters from happening again after a series of accidents point to the worst. The leader of the strike is politically motivated individual, whose ability to sway his colleagues and impress them with his moral coral courage causes the mine bosses to fear him. At the same time, one of the workers in the provincial town is attracted to a girl working in a travelling carnival, and she, in turn, longs for something more than to be pawed by the carnivals usual clientele. The sub-plot about this married mans wish to escape reality mirrors certain social conditions in Turkey very accurately. The climatic sequence in the mine is a solid piece of documentary fiction in the vein of Joris Ivens and G.W. Pabst, bearing witness to the amount of time that Özkan spent researching his subject.
RON HOLLOWAY, VARIETY
I assume that this film indicates an era for Turkish Cinema: A step for the Turkish audience to adapt to political cinema. I think the director has mixed performance and ideology together in order to make such adaptation possible. This is an era to exceed indirect political cinema. From the start, there is the need to present political thought within the framework of performance cinema. (The landslide and the rescue scenes in this film.) "The Mine" has put two factors together with success, however success should not ease its audience with the picture, we should still ask questions and find answers to them during following films.
MARCEL MARTIN, Critic for ECRAN
This film may play the role that was played by some Italian films during the beginning of the Neo-Realismo era; within the current general structure of Turkish Cinema. I may introduce a freedom boom. Since the important thing is the future of Turkish Cinema, I hope that "The Mine" will remain as a turning point rather than a beginning of a new trend.
UMBERTO ROSSI, Critic for UNITA
... Above all, Özkan has produced a film for the "masses", for the first time in our cinema sector. He has skillfully used an extra-ordinary opportunity to introduce "The Mine", know the workers and to enable all mine workers to take part in this film...
... "The Mine" is a rather consistent, clean piece of work. First of all it is a big step one that may lead to debates over serious matters as this one....
... "The Mine" is a solid production that is realistic and influential, and that signals a new era for our cinema...
"The Mine" is the best answer to "Midnight Express". I met the true face of Turkish people through this film.
... I knew Tırkish films through Yılmaz Güney films and "The Bus" film. After watching "The Mine" I acquired, for the first time, hope for cinema in third world countries. Third world cinema had endless material and theme but lacked the dialogue, the language was weak. Your film has ended this tradition. "The Mine" is very couragus, artistic, striking film with national qualities. Furthermore, it is a very inspiring film that has granted no sort of concession at all.
MUSTAFA DERVİŞ Egyptian Film Critic
The Mine is a very brave film in spite of its defficiency in its dramaturgy. It's like a documentary. A lot of similar films had been made up to now but none of them have been this striking and effective. Some people have mentioned this film to be diagraphical, but its forgotten that life consists of diagraphical behaviour. The only criticism of its dramaturgy is the sudden shape up of the workers...
RUTA SADOUL Member of the Board of French Film Library
... Every film reflects of its own reality. Some amongst us have similarized "Fırat's Spirits" to "The Mine". However, "The Mine" has taken to consideration a specific matter through an original, perculior and extra-ordinary way. The film had a simple message and this was given to the audience without boring them. This is one of the rarest and best films based directly on a strike and that has a political content....
KEN WLASHIN Administrator for English National Cinema Institute
... A very convincing film. It has entered into life, the problem itself. It contains extra-ordinary successful scenes...
MARIN PARAIANU Director of Romanian Film Archives
... Railroad is a film that displays political events in Turkey directly and bravely refers to many social matters that exist. This feature is a big one especially in the environment we currently live in. Railroad has definitely taken its place in the history of political cinema...
... Railroad gives us a view of the prolonged turmoil, social instability and the conflict between classes in Turkey...
... Before everything, this surprise is a result of Sezen Aksu's extra-ordinary successful performance and Yavuz Özkan's authoritative directing incomparable to his other films in terms of sensitivity and technical quality.
Assumably Yavuz Özkan has found his own path by the success of this film. Özkan, who has always been inclined toward society problems and individual problems in the society, has not been able to achieve such success in his other films as he did in this psychologically based film. In fact, assumingly, these kind of films that are artistically difficult and that require true artistic command show the style that Özkan should adopt.
... Pictures of Ertunç Şenkay and Pierre Novion are from time to time magnificent. Feshane is a fantastic spot. The music, as we said, was Gabrielistic and nice. Watching Semiha Berksoy was a pleasure. Hopefully she will be awarded...
... Walking on Fire was an interesting film and quite different for our cinema. In terms of visual quality, it was a success and overall successful to an increasing point. This film is made with complete attention to all detail, with faith and diligence. It is a film that forwards its message and meaning from the basis, and attracts its difference entirely, overall being a successful film ...
CUMHURİYET, SUNGU ÇAPAN
We are a very forgetful society. We often see the things that we rejected yesterday, as a saviour for today. The elections results brought this to my mind. After so much that we have witnessed in the past, we continue to think on a daily basis, not the future. We continue to live without seeing the darkness that belies three steps ahead of us. Therefore I think we should create debate for the interrogation of the individual. It is at this point where I wrote Lobster Pot.
As people need love, one another and the concept of sharing, why do people live with the secret violence that they hide within them? This is what we wanted to display. If people revise their lives once again at the end of this film, we will have reached our aim to a significant degree.
In this film I tried to watch a prostitute enter a war of pride against the whole system, doing so all alone. Of course we criticized the system, politicians and even the media that was trying to prevent her from her cause. We tried to put a sense to the ruthless attitude that the system and society adopted against such an issue.
Yavuz Özkan has achieved a consistent way of explanation, as well as a tense and depressing tone through a good quality vision and good scene work.
... Two Women is one of the peaks of Yavuz Özkan Cinema. As he has formed an excellent language in terms of cinema, he has achieved excellence in aesthetic. Two Women, featuring good performance by Zuhal Olcay and Serap Aksoy, has become an unforgettable film with its tenacious quality...
ANATOMY OF A MAN
... Everybody seems to complain but have no intentions of showing inclination to change things. We are rapidly losing ground, when people eventually realise this it will be too late. I wanted to open debate on this issue...
... You know, there are some films where at the end of the film you say to yourself; Oh I wish life was like this film, I wish it never finished! But when you watch Yavuz Özkans Anatomy of A Man, you will see that at the end of the film, the inside and the outside are the same. If we dont know when he began shooting this film but we can say that it is a film urgently shot after the Susurluk scandal...
HASAN PULUR, MİLLİYET
... As we can see that this film transforms into an Anatomy of Society, rather than an anatomy of a man, you will understand that it is the system that determines the individual and that not much space is given to the individual...
ZEYNEP ARIKANLI, RADİKAL
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