TURKISH CINEMA FROM AN AMERICAN PERSPECTIVE – Babanin Oglu

Babanin Oglu
Movie Review by: Geno Cuddy

Hello and welcome back to “Turkish Cinema from an American Perspective”, I would like to extend my apologies to everyone for not reviewing films as of late, there have been events that have led me away from my passion for Turkish cinema, but you will be happy to know that I am back and I will be submitting reviews twice a month.
Today’s film is the 1975 drama Babanin Oglu starring Cuneyt Arkin, the film concerns Murat (Arkin) a hardworking and poorly paid machinist who lives in a rundown neighborhood. He lives with his wife (played by the lovely Deniz Erkanat) his mother (Şükriye Atav) and his son (Cemil Şahbaz). He confronts his bosses about a raise in pay, but is met with scrutiny and is thrown out by the head boss (Turgut Özatay), he and his three friends are soon laid off and later that night one of them breaks into the factory and kills the factory owner (Nubar Terziyan). Murat is soon framed for the murder and is sent to prison for 25 years (I am just guessing that amount as my copy of the film contained no subtitles).

1975 drama Babanin Oglu starring Cuneyt Arkin, the film concerns Murat (Arkin) a hardworking and poorly paid machinist
Cemil Sahbaz Cuneyt Arkin

While incarcerated Murat is abused by the prisoners and is forced to become their servant, meanwhile Murat’s wife disappears and his son is soon adopted by a wise man (Huseyin Peyda, who else?). Murat, realizing that he has had enough abuse from the prisoners, starts a fight with the so called “King of the cell”. In typical Cuneyt Arkin style an all-out brawl ensues with Murat taking over the coveted throne.
Murat soon plots revenge on those who framed him and goes on a killing spree forgetting his moral values and beliefs, and also with the backing of the prisoners. Murat is eventually freed and the bloodshed begins when he kills his former bosses goons, in very interesting ways I might add, and is gaining momentum for the final showdown. Meanwhile, after those 25 years, his son has gone on to become a detective and is hot on his father’s heels. Through a serious of battles Murat finds himself and discovers his, now disheveled, wife in a dark warehouse, where she tells him of the wise man that has been taking care of their son while Murat was imprisoned. Murat goes to meet the wise man and is told of his son’s becoming a police officer. Murat leaves in a fit of sadness to finish off what he started.


The film’s ending is quite an explosive one as Murat uses a stolen car as the ultimate murder weapon and kills his enemies by escaping out of the car and letting it plummet down the valley in which his enemies have hidden. Murat finally kills off the last of the bosses and is himself shot by his son at the scene, Murat seeing his grown boy looming over him is too much for him to bear and therefore he dies.

1975 drama Babanin Oglu starring Cuneyt Arkin, the film concerns Murat (Arkin) a hardworking and poorly paid machinist


My thoughts on the film are as follows, I heavily enjoyed it and it made me have a better appreciation for the work done behind the camera as well as in front. Cuneyt Arkin was superb as Murat, and while it is not one of his best remembered films is still worth a watch for his performance, the rest of the cast put on a great showing as well. My only problem with the film is that the ending seemed a bit rushed, I believe that Murat’s death was simply a means of ending the film and is otherwise a big letdown as far as the flow of the story goes. I would have like to have seen Murat, his wife and son have a bit of a family reunion, it would have made a great excuse for a sequel, I would have seen that, but sadly it is not so. The rest of the film is a real treat and the music is a beautiful time capsule of the disco that invaded Turkey in the 70’s. I highly recommend this film and I give it four stars out of a possible five.


I will be back soon with another review but until then, take care and let the legacy of Turkish cinema live on though most of it has physically faded away with each passing year. Thank you for reading I hope you have enjoyed this review and I look forward to hearing from you as to your thoughts on the film.

1975 drama Babanin Oglu starring Cuneyt Arkin, the film concerns Murat (Arkin) a hardworking and poorly paid machinist

Babanin Oglu

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