Comics-x-aminer Presents: ‘Turkey’ Week Part 4 – Turkish Jaws!

Here at Comics-x-aminer we are starting a new tradition, in similar vain of Mystery Science Theater’s turkey day, we are doing Turkey Week. What is Turkey Week, well it’s where we so you the viewer a whole week of movies from the country of Turkey, but not just any movies, rip-off movies. You see, in the late seventies and early eighties the Turkish film association decided to ban western films from coming into the country and instead, make their own versions of that American film. So, consider these movies an A-budget version of a sweded film or in better terms, a c-budget film compared to the American classic.

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Turkey Week #4: The Desert aka Turkish Jaws


If you’re wondering why a film called The Desert has anything to do with a plot revolving around Jaws, there really is not answer I could give you nor anybody else could give you an answer. I still have no idea why this film is called The Desert in the first place, the film takes place on a ship for almost 80 percent of the movie. Why the hell would you call your movie The Desert if there isn’t even a scene in the desert. To make things even more stupid, this is the only Turkish film I have seen were there isn’t a scene in a desert. That’s right, every one of these damn movies had a scene in the desert, most likely due to lack of budget, so why not have at least a scene in the desert so you can sell the film as The Desert? Why not call the movie, The Sea or The Ocean? At least that would have had relevance to the title of the film!

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Anyway, the film stars Turkish superstar Cuneyt Arkin who if you are not familiar with him by now, you will be by the time Turkey Week gets over with. This man starred in a BUNCH of Turkish remakes including: Rambo, Mad Max, Dirty Harry, and Star Wars. This was the go-to guy for Turkish action films for most the ’70s and ’80s and might I say, this guy ranks among the best action heroes I have ever seen.

His fight scenes are all sorts of crazy for multiple reasons, including the fact that most of his fight scenes have on punching sound effect and last almost five minutes with choppy editing and the speed cranked up. The signature move that Cuneyt likes to use is to fool the audience that he can jump really high, in this case he just points the camera really high in the air and then puts a trampoline on the bottom to which he proceeds to jump on the trampoline at every single angle imaginable for about a hundred times over.

For the opening scenes for this film, we see Cuneyt on a motorcycle with rockin’ guitar music playing in the background that cuts out every time the credits appear. Literally every five seconds we get an abrupt halt in the film to see a black screen with some credits and no noise. This gets so annoying that you just have to ask yourself if the filmmakers ever heard of blending the audio with the opening sequence? This causes a problem for things to come later in the movie.

After the opening credits, we learn that Cuneyt is a hitman who doesn’t seem all that great with his job. Don’t get me wrong, he kills the guy but manages to punch-kill almost half of the people in the building just to get to him. I thought hitmen were supposed to be discreet and quiet, not running into a building like a wild bull on steroids and start going punch happy. Anyway, Cuneyt does his job but is later betrayed by his boss for some reason. So, Cuneyt decides to run away and hide out in a boat thinking he is safe. Buuuut, since the boat is very small, it doesn’t take too long for the bad guys to find Cuneyt and is sent out into the ocean tied onto a crucifix.

Now, before I talk about the shark fight that is about to begin fairly shortly, one of the recurring themes in this movie is why Cuneyt is a hitman. He is constantly having flashbacks about his family and the film plays off that he is obviously upset about something dark happening during his childhood. The film leads you to believe that his mother and sister died tragically when he was very young, giving the viewer a reason to sympathize with him to show why he became a hitman, to take lives that were taken from him.

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But no, the reason WHY Cuneyt became a hitman is because HIS DAD TOOK HIS DOG AWAY FROM HIM AND ATE THE DOG!!!! I mean, it’s one thing that his dog was taken away from him, but then have the dad enter the picture and take the dog away from him so he could eat him, I mean that’s all kinds of messed up. No questions here on wondering why he became a hitman, if you had a crazy cannibal father that just showed up, you would be crazy too.

Now, while Cuneyt is thinking about his past life, the Jaws theme plays over and over again until out of nowhere, a giant foam shark with bright blue body paint and cardboard teeth starts biting on Cuneyt savagely. The shark then opens his mouth to give the viewer confirmation that yes, the shark is definitely made from Styrofoam and take a big chomp from Cuneyt’s arm. Cuneyt seems really unphased by the whole shark thing and it even looks like that the shark is actually freeing him from his rope restraints.

Cuneyt thanks the shark by finding a giant wooden stake that was randomly swimming around the ocean and proceeds to stab the fuck out of the shark. By the third stab, Cuneyt manages to take out the shark’s eyeball and the shark is slain, all in around 45 seconds. So yeah, Jaws is only in this movie for around 1 minute and 30 seconds. Why the hell would you try to rip off Jaws only to have him in the film for such a short period of time? Hell, the shark doesn’t seem relevant because Cuneyt spends the rest of the film kicking ass with no bite marks on him, so the shark did a really crappy job biting him so many times. That or Cuneyt’s skin is made of steel. I’m inclined to go with option two.

So Cuneyt gets to shore and you know what, I don’t care anymore. Here was this whole buildup for a shark, and it gets it’s ass handed to him in under a minute. What a huge letdown!!! The rest of the film is pretty stupid other than the fight scenes but I have to give it credit, the shark scene made me laugh for the rest of the film.
Don’t bother watching the whole film but rather watch the scene with the Styrofoam shark.

Feel free to come back for Part 5 tomorrow 11/25/13

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