Unfortunately, Turkish horror cinema seems to be stuck in the realm of jinn films, unable to venture beyond. Given this situation, we find ourselves searching for different flavors in cinema, curious about anything that appears unique. On a cold day in 2015, Can Evrenol partially answered this quest for me. His directorial work, “Baskin,” was a film that garnered significant praise, particularly in certain quarters. Although I didn’t quite appreciate its final minutes, the potential it displayed was undeniably intriguing. I even went as far as to say that he might be the person who would change the course of “horror cinema” in Turkey by offering a previously unexplored example of Gore horror. However, it appears that I may have been mistaken in this regard, as “Housewife” falls short of my expectations.
Let’s briefly touch upon the plot… The film tells the story of a woman living secluded in the forest, her delusions, and what she experiences through a medium she meets later on. It focuses on her turmoil involving the unexplainable and her curiosity about becoming a mother. Although the film starts calmly, it gradually builds its tempo, merging with the director’s passion for Gore. Especially in its final moments, the film has a reddish tone reminiscent of Giallo films. To provide an example, it bears a strong resemblance to “Suspiria.”
However, there is a problem: While the film’s cover may seem satisfying, its content is problematic. This is because there is no actual story being told, nor is there any development in the narrative. It’s impossible to understand what’s happening throughout the film from start to finish, and it’s evident that the director doesn’t know either. Furthermore, deciphering the reasons behind the events in the ending is also impossible. Compared to “Baskin,” this film is a completely ambiguous work that fails to convey a clear message. For someone like me who values a coherent narrative, the film becomes a challenging adventure after a certain point.
Housewife’s dubbing and language choices are incredibly tiresome, even unbearable. This choice makes focusing on a storyless film even more difficult. It is, in fact, quite ludicrous. Such a technical failure seriously hampers the film’s flow. However, the worst part comes at the end. Normally, I don’t stay for director Q&A sessions. However, due to the extremely poor quality of this film following “Baskin,” I felt the need to listen to Can Evrenol. I wanted to know what he would say about the film and its development. I wish I hadn’t. My image of Can Evrenol was shattered.
Hearing him openly admit that the film didn’t have a starting point, that they reached an unexpected place while jotting down ideas, was disheartening. He clearly stated that they weren’t telling any story in the film. Despite his denial, I saw a haphazard screenplay in the movie. I also learned the reason behind the unbelievable bloodbath in the final scene firsthand: “I just felt like it.” Unfortunately, the image of him as a “visionary figure in horror cinema” in my mind was shattered. It turns out he is just a director who lacks a plan, acts arbitrarily, and thinks, “I’ll do whatever project comes my way.” Consequently, the failure of “Housewife” in my eyes has been explained.
In conclusion… “Housewife” is a disappointing work from a director who showed serious potential with “Baskin.” It is a bad film in every aspect, from acting to the screenplay, from technical aspects to its ending. It doesn’t frighten, it doesn’t engage you carefully, and it doesn’t convey anything meaningful. It’s a confusing film with no clear direction, leaving you perplexed. Unfortunately, I want to consider this film as if it never existed. It’s quite disheartening that such a film came from a director I saw potential in.
Cast & Crew
director: Can Evrenol
writers: Erhan Ozogul, Metin Anter, Müge Büyüktalas
starring: Clémentine Poidatz, David Sakurai, Alicia Kapudağ, Ali Aksöz, Defne Halman
TURKEY – USA | 2017 | 82 MINUTES |