Docpoint – Helsinki Documentary Film Festival


Les Enfants Terribles

In the province of Hatay, near the Syrian border, two siblings are in very different situations in their lives. Mahmut, working as a manager in a restaurant in Kuwait, regrets getting married and wants to get a divorce from his wife who stayed in Turkey. Then there is Zeynep, who works as a dressmaker in a factory and dreams of studies in a university, actively trying to leave the village. Although the surrounding world and people in it change, some things remain the same. Restrictions brought on by the conservative environment and double-standards create tension, a battle between past and future within the family.

Ahmet Necdet Cupur, who left his home when he was young and went to see the world, returned to his birthplace with his camera and filmed the lives of his family members for three years. The film captures the dreams and disappointments of the siblings, but also the mutual incomprehension between generations. In long sequences of the film, people divided by different worldviews get into heated arguments and express their feelings openly.

Children who have been brought up in the middle of different restrictions and expectations are now seeking their place in the world. It is not always a question of what everyone else does. The more important thing is what they want. The simple and modest Les Enfants Terribles eloquently depicts the young people’s growth into adulthood and the maturing of their thoughts.

Omar Fasolah (translated by Elina Huttunen)

Language: Turkish, Arabic
Subtitles: English
Length: 90 min
Age Limit: K7
Year: 2021
Production Country: France, Turkey, Germany

Director: Ahmet Necdet Cupur
Producer: Delphine Morel
Production Company: TS Productions
Screenplay: Ahmet Necdet Cupur
Editing: Mathilde Van de Moortel
Cinematographer: Ahmet Necdet Cupur
Music: Paradox Paradise
Sound Design: Ahmet Necdet Cupur, Gürkan Özkaya, Johannes Grehl