If you are looking for a way to make learning the Turkish language fun, why not turn to Turkish cinema? Sitting back to watch a film is something we all do in our spare time, so why not double up on enjoying the best Turkish movies with expanding your Turkish vocabulary? Below we will take a trip through the finest Turkish movies that will give you a better grasp of the language.
Learn Turkish Through Turkish Movies
In this blog, we will be looking at Turkish movies that have scored highly across the most popular movie sites on the internet in order that there is something of quality for everyone.
Miracle In Cell No. 7 (7. Koğuştaki Mucize)
This is the emotionally harrowing tale of an autistic father imprisoned after being wrongly accused of the murder of a young girl. The story is set in 1983 and opens with Memo (the father) living in a small village with Ova (his young daughter). After being sent to jail for a crime he did not commit, Memo saves a fellow inmate from being murdered and soon finds himself making friends with his other prisoners. His cellmates soon realize that Memo is incapable of the crime he has been accused of and decides to help prove his innocence.
Meanwhile, Ova meets a deserter who witnessed the crime her father is accused of. Asking the prison warden to investigate the results of the death of the deserter. Memo is then helped to escape his incarceration.
A remake of a Korean film, this emotionally heartbreaking Turkish take on the story was entered at the 93rd Academy Awards under the Best International Feature category.
The Butterfly’s Dream (Kelebeğin Rüyası)
Based loosely on a true story, this is a classic tale of everyday life and two young poets competing for the affection of a beautiful young woman. This Turkish film is a drama romance set in 1941 during world war II. Muzaffer and Rustu live in a town on the Black Sea where life is hard. The pair take solace in their poetry and find inspiration when wealthy schoolgirl Suzan returns home from Istanbul.
She agrees to participate in a play they are writing, but her father disapproves. The story takes a turn when tuberculosis forces Rustu to depart for a sanitorium on an island. This leaves the love triangle broken and the wooing of Suzan to Muzaffar, who is also suffering from the disease.
The Butterfly’s Dream was selected as the official Turkish submission for best foreign language film at the 2014 Oscars.
My Father And My Son (Babam ve Oğlum)
Sadik, the main character and an ambitious young man, decides to defy his father and leave his family’s remote mountain village to study journalism in Istanbul. His father, Hüseyin, wants him to study agriculture so he can continue tending the farm. While at university, Sadik becomes involved in the drama of extreme political activities, which infuriates his father, who disowns him.
On 12 September 1980, Sadik’s wife goes into labor, but the military coup, and the curfew imposed, means there is no way to get her to the hospital. She tragically dies in a park during childbirth. Their son survives. Because of Sadik’s radical activities, he is arrested and tortured. After being released, he realizes he doesn’t have long left to live and returns to his village with his son Deniz. The story then deals with Deniz exploring his new world and Sadik’s relationship with old friends, his old love, and his father.
Released in 2005, My Father And My Son quickly became one of Turkey’s highest-grossing films of all time.
Once Upon A Time In Anatolia (Bir Zamanlar Anadolu’da)
Set in the small town of Keskin in central Anatolia, this beautifully shot Turkish film is a visual feast and focuses on a police officer, a doctor, and a local prosecutor trying to discover the true identity of a murderer and the location of their victim. The suspects are Kenan and his brother, who is mentally challenged because they have both confessed.
However, something doesn’t sit right with the whole situation and the men may have been wrongfully accused. The search for the body proves difficult because Keman cannot remember the exact location of the body. This Turkish movie is so much more than a simple murder mystery and explores diverse topics as all involved try to get to the bottom of this complicated case.
Cannes Film Festival
Directed by famous director Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Once Upon A Time In Anatolia was co-winner of the Grand Prix at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival.
Saban, Son Of Saban (Şaban Oğlu Şaban)
Comedy fans will love this classic Turkish whodunnit. We follow the main characters Shaban and his best friend Ramazan as they leave the army and decide to go to work together in a nightclub. Shaban, who we find out has a bit of history with Husamettin, his former commander, meets him again in the nightclub. Husamettin, who is visiting the club with his inlaws is less than pleased to bump into Shaban, but their destinies seem to be entwined. It transpires that Ramazan has had his precious family diamond stolen and the pair of friends are now tasked with attempting to solve the mystery.
Directed by Ertem Eğilmez, this is a hilarious Turkish comedy film from 1977.
Sour Apples (Ekşi Elmalar)
Muazzez is a beautiful girl with a perfect life who is the daughter of Aziz Özay, her mentally ill father and former mayor of the town who is now suffering from Alzheimer’s. Along with his wife and three daughters, Aziz lives in a gorgeous house surrounded by a magnificent garden and orchard. The locals like nothing more than flirting with the daughters and swiping fruit from the trees. One day, Muazzez discovers a handsome young man in the grounds whose hair smells fabulous. From here the story explodes into various adventures.
Famous Director/writer Yilmaz Erdogan has crafted a hilarious script that is guaranteed to have you simultaneously laughing and crying.
Learn Turkish With The Ling App
We have explored just a handful of amazing films from Turkey. If you would like to dive deeper into the Turkish language and enjoy more Turkish films, why not download the Ling app to your phone? Available at the App Store and Google Play, the Ling App is the perfect way to learn any new language through lessons, quizzes, and games.