Mixed Kebab – *

Posted: March 10, 2012 in 2012, Drama, Flanders, LGBT themed, Turkey, X

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1301308/

Ibrahim is a twenty something from Antwerp who comes from a Turkish family and is gay. Unlike his troublesome teenage brother, Ibrahim is the ‘good son’ of the family, especially since he’s now going to get married to a niece from Turkey. That will stop the rumors on the street! But Ibrahim isn’t going alone to meet his future wife. He’s taking along a boy he’s been eyeing at for a while now. So far the introduction to this intercultural drama that isn’t half as controversial as it desperately wants to be.

The first 20 minutes are dead awful. The introduction of the stereotypical characters and situations make you want to leave even before the actual story begins. Two superfluous scenes of people sniffing coke as if it’s the most common thing in the world nowadays. WRONG! Even more annoying is the dialogue between the characters. It’s like they are all reading an auto cue and were told to do it as emotionless as possible. This is NO actor’s movie. Lucas De Wolf who plays the troubled adolescent is the only one that shines a bit. The rest look like they rehearsed every scene just once before the camera’s started rolling. But  it does get (a little) better at the end. Surprisingly enough the second story line of the movie intrigues more than the gay theme. The troublesome brother of the main character gets recruited by an extremist muslim organisation after he’s been ‘wrongly’ treated at the police station. Again thanks to the performance of the actor playing the part. Cem Akkanat, the actor who plays the main character, is so zen throughout the whole movie (apart from one small outburst) that you have no empathy for him at all. He seems to be totally okay being gay, so why would the viewer care about his so-called struggle. The adolescent who can’t seem to make any right decisions for society, his parents and himself is much more compelling.

You can’t really blame the movie makers for mixing these controversial topics into a popcorn movie that is shown in all the major cinema’s. Thought provoking and visually poetic or confronting master pieces about one of these topics would keep the mainstream audiences away. I guess this one is still attracting crowds. I saw several muslims in the audience (assuming the girls wearing head veils were muslim and their Mediterranean looking male friends as well) and I was curious to see their reactions. A real controversial movie would unleash interaction from the audience, but nothing during this screening. It is a very amicable movie that doesn’t offend anybody, which isn’t necessary, but well, sorry, it’s also a tad boring.

The movie makers just tried to mix too many different hot topic ingredients in the blender and produced a very tasteless smoothie of a bit of everything and nothing in particular. A missed chance.

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