In July (2001)
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Audience Reviews for In July
Fatih Akin, a polarizing figure in German Turkish filmmaking, delivers with Im Juli (2000), a film that's impact is felt across Europe. This love story is more than just a romantic comedy; it is a quest for identity in a fluid cosmopolitan world. All in all, the film is lighthearted and pleasurable. The film, stars Mortiz Bleibtreu and Christiane Paul. Daniel (Bleibtreu) is a German school teacher, and Juli (Paul) is a German shopkeeper. Juli attempts to make Daniel fall in love with her, but her plot is foiled when her efforts instead make Daniel fall for a Turkish woman named Melek. This leads Daniel to travel across Europe to Istanbul in search of Melek, with Juli accompanying him for much of the journey. As the film progresses, it takes many twists and turns that invite viewers question their preconceptions about the characters. Each time the viewer is surprised by a character's actions, a new facet of their true identity is revealed. In this way, character development in Im Juli is thorough and dynamic throughout the entire film. Im Juli is a Romcom/Road Movie that invites viewers to enjoy themselves, though not before fundamentally separating its events from reality. A considerable amount of suspension of disbelief is an absolute requisite for proper enjoyment of the film. There are many coincidences that are nothing short of ridiculous. There are many non-realistic events that are pivotal to the plot. The volume of ridiculous events and Hollywoodian clichés might be overwhelming to some, but to the viewer who is willing to set aside all notions of probability for the sake of a good Romcom, this film will certainly do the job. The film does have real-world cultural implications, but no obvious agenda. It portrays a Europe as an environment of cosmopolitanism hybrid culture. For instance, while traveling to Istanbul to meet Melek, Daniel makes his way across Europe. The relatively fluid border-crossing that occurs in the film presents Europe as a connected, borderless world. Outside of the positive illustration of this type of environment, the film feels not so much like a social or political comment, but more like a silly romantic adventure for enjoyment rather than analysis. However, Fatih Akin brings the film to the table with far-reaching cultural impact wrapped up in a charming romantic comedy. Im Juli is not just a quest for love and identity; it is an adventure through a cosmopolitan Europe that embraces the pleasures of hybrid culture.
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