After 14 years a criminal finds out a disturbing truth that shakes his world in this handsome but somewhat overlong drama.
This review of the Netflix film Love Me Instead does not contain spoilers.
This film is filled with mystery, drama, love, and lies. Directed by Mehmet Ada Öztekin, he returns with another great piece of cinema. The cast for the film includes Songül Öden, Aleyna Özgeçen, Füsun Demirel, Sarp Akkaya, Do?ukan Polat, Ali Seçkiner Alici, Ercan Kesal, Sinan Arslan, and Ushan Çak?r. The film has a runtime of two hours with audio and subtitles present in both English and Turkish (original).
The story surrounds a prisoner and the guard who is responsible for him. Musa (the prisoner, played by Sarp Akkaya) has been in prison for 14 years and gets released from prison for one day. Musa learns that the person shown as his daughter is not his own daughter and that his actual daughter has been killed. Thus, from that moment on, Musa decided to pursue the truth.
Although the story does build, and I was intrigued, gripped and it pulled at my heartstrings, there were times this film felt slightly long and artistic for a “drama” – don’t get me wrong, the cinematography is visually stunning, mixed with soft guitar music, it’s very artistic, but it wasn’t building in intensity. The film is very one-level. There is a lot of emotional scene-setting, showing the beautiful landscapes and areas, but almost twenty minutes in, he finally meets his family after 14 years and it’s very tame and soft. Not what I was expecting. It is a slow burn.
However, it’s got a great cast, and acting is to a very high standard. Captivating and great chemistry between the actors. There are important topics covered, such as what can drive someone to conduct criminal offences, and we see the illegal world driven by money, drugs and prostitution.
With a powerful, dramatic ending this film makes for a good watch. I don’t regret it and I hope it gets the recognition it deserves. If you’re looking for an investigative story, filled with secrets, mystery, and revenge, this is the film for you.
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