Turtles Can Fly

1st feature out of Iraq since the war, from the director of A Time for Drunken Horses

Turtles Can Fly
We are in Iraq, on the brink of the American invasion. To be specific, we are in the Kurdish enclaves of northern Iraq, in the makeshift villages and refugee camps. Nobody seems to be in charge here—nobody, at any rate, from the adult population.

Kak's (Soran Ebrahim) friends and dependents call him Satellite, because what they desire most is not food or shelter but news, and among Satellite’s gifts is a capacity to haggle in the markets, then come home dragging a satellite dish. The movie revolves around a curious historical anomaly: looking forward to war.

Unlikely objects and daunting juxtapositions pepper the landscape of the picture, starting with the throng of youngsters patiently working their way up a grassy hillside. They carry baskets on their backs, and you find yourself craning to see what’s inside: the children are harvesting land mines, which, if unexploded, will fetch a fair price.

The heroine, or leading victim, of “Turtles Can Fly” is Agrin (Avaz Latif), who is fifteen. She has one brother who has stumps for arms, and another who is blind. The problem is that, as we discover, the second of these is not a brother at all but Agrin’s son, born of a rape by Iraqi soldiers. The image of the blind boy reaching for a necklace strung with bullets, or howling into a stack of empty shell casings may leave some viewers almost unable to cope. Turtles Can Fly hits and hurts the eyes (the rainy days are lousy enough, but the skies of royal blue, above such grief, feel especially insulting). (A. Lane, The New Yorker)

Turtles Can Fly

Thu & Fri September 22 & 23, 2005, 7:00 & 9:00, Muenzinger Auditorium

98min, Iran, 2004, in Kurdish w/English subtitles, PG-13 - Color



10 films for $60 with punch card
$9 general admission. $7 w/UCB student ID, $7 for senior citizens
$1 discount to anyone with a bike helmet
Free on your birthday! CU Cinema Studies students get in free.


Pay lot 360 (now only $1/hour!), across from the buffalo statue and next to the Duane Physics tower, is closest to Muenzinger. Free parking can be found after 5pm at the meters along Colorado Ave east of Folsom stadium and along University Ave west of Macky.


Park elsewhere and catch the HOP to campus

International Film Series

(Originally called The University Film Commission)
Established 1941 by James Sandoe.

First Person Cinema

(Originally called The Experimental Cinema Group)
Established 1955 by Carla Selby, Gladney Oakley, Bruce Conner and Stan Brakhage.

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(AKA The Rocky Mountain Film Center)
First offered degrees in filmmaking and critical studies in 1989 under the guidance of Virgil Grillo.

Celebrating Stan

Created by Suranjan Ganguly in 2003.

C.U. Department of Cinema Studies & Moving Image Arts

Established 2017 by Chair Ernesto Acevedo-Muñoz.

Thank you, sponsors!
Boulder International Film Festival
Department of Cinema Studies & Moving Image Arts

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