At the Movies in Turkey
Via the BBC
At one of Istanbul's biggest multiplex cinemas the blockbuster is showing on five separate screens and nearly all the seats are sold out. It's the same story across the country.I guess turnabout is fair play. Our action heroes have been killing evil Muslims ever since they stopped killing evil Russians. But I think the real winners here are Billy Zane and Gary Busey who managed to land spots in the film. God knows those guys needed some work.
"I'm back to see it for the second time already," says one student, waiting impatiently outside Screen 10.
"It is anti-American, but we already know what they've done in Iraq. That's the reality. Now we can see it on screen."
The movie opens with a real-life incident: the arrest in July 2003 of Turkish special forces in Sulaymaniyah, northern Iraq.
The soldiers were led out of their headquarters at gunpoint, with hoods over their heads. America later apologised, but it appears the offence ran deep.
At the time Turkey took the incident as national humiliation. In this film the fictional hero sets out for revenge.
From then on, the action pits good Turks against very bad Americans, in a mix of fact and fiction with a deeply nationalistic flavour.