They say love is blind, and viewers of this wry, low-key, gentle-paced,notably chaste ‘romance’ (whose protagonists exercise such demure restraint that it makes Brief Encounter look like Last Tango In Paris) mustn’t to examine the plot too closely if they want to fall under its refined spell. Predicated on a series of unlikely events and even more improbable coincidences (rather than a teeming metropolis of 20 million, Wrong Rosary’s Istanbul, while pungently evoked, seems more like a small village) the soapy script relates the very slow-burning attraction that develops between a lovelorn muezzin (Nadir Saribacak) and his meek-and-mild neighbour (Gorkem Yeltan). The latter is an ultra-mousy Catholic spinster who was – for reasons revealed during the movie’s wildly melodramatic prologue – brought up in a convent, and has plans to become a nun.
Shot on classy, slighty dusty/milky high-definition DV, this character-based charmer tackles some weighty and topical issues relating to cultural and religious divides, but does so with a strain of gentle humour that prevents things from getting too preachy or worthy. A little more background on the muezzin’s role in the mosque and the community might not have gone amiss, however, as we don’t get much sense of how transgressive his behaviour might be regarded by his ’employers.’ Nor does the nature of his relationship with Islam really come into proper focus, instead his status as muezzin coming across primarily as a tricky – if somewhat nebulous – obstacle standing in the way of his heart’s true desires.
Review By Neil Young, Jigsaw Lounge, 2009
You can watch Uzak İhtimal (Wrong Rosary) on iTunes in many countries.