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Turtles can fly

March 31, 2011

In the makeshift refugee villages of northern Iraq (somewhere on the border between Turkey and Iraq) shortly before 2003’s U.S.-led invasion, parent less children spend their days collecting land mines and awaiting information on the impending war… This is how the movie “Turtles can fly” starts…

The characters in the movie are children and teenagers, all of them orphans; there are adults in the camp, but the kids run their own lives. The movie is both sad and beautiful as it’s main character Agrin (a 14 year old girl).

And this post is about Agrin (played by Latif), because after the movie ‘she’ is the only one who remains with me. Agrin by far is the most indelible and mysterious character in “Turtles Can Fly”. Agrin was assaulted/ raped by Saddam’s soldiers at age of 11 and carries the scars of the psychic damage done to her.

In her, the Director has created one of the most beautiful and unsettling portraits of fear, innocence and reasoning, one that is sure to stay with viewers long after her fate is decided. Given below are a few still moments of her from the movie –

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Quiet and unsettled in herself
She wears a long maroon robe
and a torn sleeveless jacket
… throughout the movie

Her eyes long for love
and yet fears everything
thoughts have left her
all she does is observe

Like an Ice queen
she remains blank for
it is better to be numb
than to be devastated.

She does not represent
any particular suffering
And yet I see her as a
Symbol of Suffering itself

and of priceless beauty…

The movie starts with Agrin walking towards the end of a cliff… you can see the movie here –

6 Comments leave one →
  1. Rihana permalink
    April 1, 2011 10:23

    Just watched the movie, quite moving
    what a befitting poem


  2. Shiran permalink
    April 1, 2011 14:37

    I too had similar thoughts running in my mind after watching the movie. 🙂


  3. April 1, 2011 14:39

    @ Rihana and Shiran – thanks


  4. Pranoy permalink
    April 1, 2011 16:30

    I just read these lines somewhere – Our sweetest songs are those, that tell of saddest thought by Shelley


    • April 1, 2011 18:43

      I too read the same today itself 🙂
      Our sincerest laughter
      With some pain is fraught;
      Our sweetest songs are those
      That tell of saddest thought.


  5. Pranoy permalink
    April 10, 2011 22:05

    Yeah 🙂
    Nice blog dude, love it


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