The Sugar Grocer

***1/2

Reviewed by: Andrew Robertson

The Sugar Grocer
"Ferman Narin's camera creeps along with the grocer, through doors, up stairs, and further as things escalate."

It is a cockroach that emerges from the rice, the strains of Flight of the Bumblebee are more optimistic than its fate. Trapped by circumstance, it is perhaps no less doomed than our protagonist. A literal corner shop, shutters and desperation.

Bleach might be cheaper in BIM (a Turkish supermarket chain), but they don't offer the same service. Home delivery, if not more. Ferman Narin's camera creeps along with the grocer, through doors, up stairs, and further as things escalate. A black comedy of errors, import (and chaos) hidden in every gesture and action. Rivalries are everywhere, not just with supermarket chains but with the local residents. There's a brief clip of the Untouchables, but as with Capone there will be an accounting. The shop will sell on tick, but that is not the only debt that will come due.

Television provides a constant diet of advice for the criminal, though neither is perhaps intended as such. A careless whisper could give away a plan, but fortunately the radio has other stations. Sound is often key, from the comic caterwauls of the neighbourhood stray to the suspenseful strings of the score.

Borrowing from a number of sources, willing even to bootleg the TV and crib the tricolour farewell of a CRT at the close of credits, The Sugar Grocer is not shy about its thefts. Let down by slightly clumsy subtitles, it deserves some praise for contexutal information in brackets (as above). Its intent is ever clear, however muddled its text. Life is cheap, but it is even cheaper at A101.

Reviewed on: 08 Oct 2021
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Salih is a neighborhood grocery living alone in a monotonous life. One day with an order coming while Salih is sitting at the grocery store, he will come out of this monotony and experience the most traumatic day of his life.

Director: Ferman Narin

Writer: Kendal Ozturk, Ferman Narin

Starring: Tolga Manyer, Salih Yildirim, Ayfer Sen, Mehmet Leblebici, Aynur Saçkesen, Pelin Gören, Bülent Kizil

Year: 2020

Runtime: 20 minutes

Country: Turkey

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