Winner of the Critics Award at last year's Cannes Film Festival, 'Climates' finds Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan examining the nature of relationships and longing, with mixed results.
On their summer holidays in Kas architecture lecturer Isa (Nuri Bilge Ceylan) and his partner, TV researcher Bahar (Ebru Ceylan, the director's real-life wife), finally admit their relationship is going nowhere and split up. The autumn finds Isa drawn back to a former lover (Kesal) while Bahar has left Istanbul to work on a TV production in the east of the country. Will the depths of winter see a thaw between the two of them?
If you're a fan of films with long, awkward silences 'Climates' will feel like all your birthdays have come at once - built as it is around two people who seem unable to say the important things. Like Ceylan's previous film 'Distant' ('Uzak'), it's strong on atmosphere and cinematography as the director and his co-star brood against the backdrop of some stunning visuals. You'll either love it or feel that you're walking backwards in a snowdrift - maybe both depending on the scene.
Ceylan's decision to keep the dialogue spare is a brave one but 'Climates' storyline would've been more powerful if it had shown its two characters' parallel lives, rather than focussing largely on Isa with Bahar only appearing again towards the close. It's a missed opportunity for viewers to get more of an insight into one of the characters and perhaps understand why both felt their hearts had been hollowed out.
Lovers of the happy ending will find it far too chilly.