I was first introduced to the genre of Turkish blockbuster spin-off movies by a French friend – a mustachioed punk rocker who worked as a blacksmith in Southern France. He also displayed a penchant for good humor and bad taste. To be precise, doom-metal and sludge-core which he deemed to be the heaviest and slowest music around; his aunt’s extreme chilli sauce which he treated like a dangerous explosive weapon (“just one drop will do, and no more”); and of course C-grade and exploitation movies from the the Philippines, Turkey and everywhere in-between. This guy was not a man of half measures, and his passions were many. On one of our occasional swap-meets of strange music and stranger films he gave me a copy of Turkish Star Wars and warned: “It’s so bad it’s good!” He is also a man that does not lie.
This was my awakening to the world of Turkish films and sequels bent on riding the wave of popular 80’s Hollywood films. Turkish Star Wars (otherwise known as The Man Who Saves the World) crudely moves between original scenes of the Millennium Falcon and the Death Star, before cutting to low budget shots of desert monsters in cardboard suits and tin foil alien-bots fighting what can only be assumed as Turkish-styled Jedi. To accompany the blatant use of the Indiana Jones soundtrack is a ridiculous plot that confuses the ‘hard-to-understand’ with ‘makes-no-sense-whatsoever’.
Turkish Superman’s low budget and god-awful special effects transform the hero in to a pervy strongman who prefers to go it on foot more than fly (to cut costs of course). The fight scenes render him more like a stone cold Terminator than an agile superhero. The film’s plot ends up featuring more kidnappings, henchmen, and suspense than you would otherwise expect. It’s a story where the villain makes that painful mistake of setting up a trap for the hero, revealing his plans, and then not sticking around to make sure he is successfully exterminated. With this in mind it would only make good sense to use that spy vs spy tune off the James Bond soundtrack.
Years later I am still making my way through the psychedelic world of these foreign fakes and movie mash ups. The range is extensive. The content hilarious. Recommended for summer mooching. These films are a friendly reminder that the world is not so boring and that strange and colorful things can emerge out of every circumstance.
If you don’t know where to start, I’ve made some recommendations for you to begin your journey.
Turkish Star Wars (The Man Who Saves the World)
Turkish Star Trek