Rıza Oylum Highlights Power of Cinema

Rıza Oylum Highlights Power of Cinema

Rıza Oylum was born in Istanbul in 1984. He has written many books, such as Far East Cinema, Russian Cinema, German Cinema, Middle East Cinema, Iranian Cinema, and Cinema Lessons. He is a member of SIYAD (Turkish Film Critics Association – FIPRESCI-Turkey).

You have written many books about the cinema in different countries that include Iranian Cinema. Is your book also translated into Persian or English?

This book has been published for a month and one of my works after the festival is to go to the 2019 Tehran International Book Fair and talk about it there. Many books on Iranian cinema have been published in English, and in Iran, there are many experts who write about Iranian cinema. I wrote the book mostly for Turkish fans.

Do you see any influence between Iranian and Turkish cinemas?

The two cinemas affect each other, but when we are talking about mainstream cinema and Iranian TV shows generally, I can say Turkish TV series have had a greater impact on Iranian productions. On the other hand, Iranian art movies and filmmakers, especially Abbas Kiarostami, have left their mark on Turkish cinema.

How do you see the position of Iranian cinema in Asia?

The Iranian cinema has its own unique features, for example, conscience is one of the main themes of your films. In general, Iranian cinema deals with inner aspects of humans and expresses spiritual and moral values. Iranian short movies are also different. Iran invests a lot in professional cinema. They know where the power is. This has helped showcase a peaceful image from your country to the world.

How is the Turkish cinema performing?

Well, in Turkey, there is no entity like the Iranian Youth Cinema Society. Cinema in Iran is directly involved with people. Young people are making many films. In Turkey, the government allocates certain budget for films. Festivals also support the industry.

What is your take on the festival?

It’s my first but the program is very professional, just like other international festivals. Tehran is a big city, and it’s good that screenings happen everywhere and not just in Charsou Cineplex. This is a true international cinematic event.

The curtain falls on the 37th Fajr International Film Festival on Thursday, April 25. Vahdat Hall will host the closing ceremony, attended by Iranian and international filmmakers and guests.


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