Our regular critic. Journalist, writer, author. Works mostly from Central and Eastern Europe and Russia.
TRADITION: The moving story of a Turkish child bride trafficked to Europe –Red Moon is as much family therapy as a heart-rending road movie.

Orginal title: Les Lunes Rousses )
Director: Tülin Özdemir
Country: Belgium, 2019. 97min

Tülin Özdemir’s sensitive and moving story about a Turkish woman taken to Europe as a nine-year old and married off at 13 to a stranger five years her senior, is a timely tale of the iniquities of the age-old practice of arranged marriages in some cultures.

Red Moon is tightly focused around the close relationship between the village-born Hafize and her niece – for whom she was effectively a surrogate mother in Brussels during the first four years of her life in Belgium. The two women, separated in age by little more than 10 years, are collaborators in a joint expedition to unpick the generational damage poverty, paternalism and arranged marriages have done to them and the women of their clan.

A story of poverty, hopelessness and ancient rigidities emerges

Hafize’s journey is all about sifting through the identify that was thrust upon her as a child-wife, mother and carer – as she seeks liberation from a past that still weighs heavily upon her heart and soul.

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