PELIN ESMER, “QUEEN LEAR”
WINNER: 2021 JURY AWARD – BEST FEATURE
2019, Turkey, 84 mins.
Filmmaker Pelin Esmer accepts the SDFF 2021 Jury Award for Best Feature for Queen Lear. King Lear traveling on the dusty roads to the remotest villages of Turkey turns delicately into Queen Lear in the hands of a peasant-women theatre group.
Sixteen years ago, a handful of peasant women from the mountains of southern Turkey formed a theatre group, which later became the subject of the documentary The Play. The women acted out their own life stories in the village, and the play changed their lives. Now, they take to the road with an adaptation of Shakespeare’s King Lear, travelling on the dusty and risky roads to remote, forgotten villages in the mountains of Turkey that are hardly reached by drinking water. The play delicately becomes Queen Lear in the hands of the group.
The feature jury has selected Queen Lear for Best Feature Film. An intimate portrayal of lives rarely seen in cinema, Queen Lear shares the interiority of middle aged peasant women as they reflect on love, death and aging, through the prism of art.