A film by Gürcan Keltek
2017, 84 minutes
No. 230


Gürcan Keltek’s poetic first feature captures a critical moment in the Turkish-Kurdish conflict via otherworldly black-and-white images, largely filmed with disarming immediacy by Southeast Turkish locals. Meteors repurposes this archival footage and combines it with intimate interviews and oneiric scenes of life in Southeast Anatolia to yield a panoramic view of Turkey in a moment of existential and political upheaval; the reverberations of the fight for Turkey’s future find expression in mountains dotted by rams and hunters and chaotic city streets littered with debris and protesters alike. Transcending fiction and nonfiction to arrive at a political truth somewhere in between, Meteors is a transfixing work featuring a cosmic ending not to be missed.

Winner, Cinelab Award, Locarno International Film Festival
Winner, Best Documentary, Bratislava International Film Festival
Winner, Human Rights Award, Buenos Aires International Festival of Independent Cinema
Official Selection, Art of the Real
Official Selection, International Film Festival Rotterdam

“The Turkish film-maker has found a Shakespearean dimension to a suppressed news story in his native land: a suspicion of macrocosmic disorder, of falcons being hawked at and killed by mousing owls, a rumour that disorder below had let to upheaval in the heavens above... Keltek and his collaborator, the author Ebru Ojen Şahin, have found in the meteors a higher truth, as if the heavens themselves were speaking out.” — Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian

“Poetry and philosophy meet political barbarism.” — Thomas Nguyen, Little White Lies

“Co-opting internet uploads, foreign news reports and sometimes CCTV, Keltek drains the colour from all the imagery, creating a sense of visual cohesion between these disparate records. This gives an immediately unifying sense to this collage of place and a memorial hue to the devastating histories visited upon it.” - Ben Nicholson, Sight and Sound Magazine

"A documentary living a second life or afterlife as a fiction film, yet preserving the same amount of impact in both incarnations." - Martin Kudlac, Screen Anarchy

"Like Patricio Guzmán's Nostalgia for the Light, this poetic documentary finds deeply painful but also awesome connection between cosmic phenomenon and a nation's internal bloodshed: the occurrence in 2015 of a meteor shower over Turkey at a time of martial law and violent repression of the Kurds. In beautifully grainy video, the luminous streaks across the night sky rhyme with and contrast against the gunfire and smoke of government action." - Daniel Kasman, MUBI Notebook