"'When We Leave': A Muslim wife breaks away
In the gripping melodrama 'When We Leave,' a Turkish-German woman straddles tradition and modernity
By Andrew O'Hehir
Sibel Kekilli in 'When We Leave'
'When We Leave' begins with a scene that suggests shocking violence and ends by delivering that same scene in full (which turns out to be even worse than we thought at first). At least you won't think you're heading for an up-with-people, feel-good experience. A gripping tragic melodrama about a young Turkish-German woman torn between the modern, secular society around her and the demands of her traditional Islamic family, writer-director Feo Aladag's debut film goes straight at the most contentious issue plaguing contemporary Europe. Aladag is an Austrian of European heritage, but her outstanding Turkish cast portrays the conflict that erupts around Umay (Sibel Kekilli), a beautiful young woman who defies tradition by leaving her abusive husband, with remarkable sensitivity."
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