Turkish Star Wars (1982) Reviewed


Turks in space! Murat dons his roller-derby helmet before escaping the Emperial destroyer in what must be his convertible x-wing fighter.

Turks in space! Murat dons his roller-derby helmet before escaping the Emperial destroyer in what must be his convertible x-wing fighter.

TURKISH STAR WARS (aka Dünyayi kurtaran adam) (aka The Man Who Saves the World) (1982)
Copyright laws are not globally binding and that’s how you end up with funny little imports like Turkish Star Wars (or as its title is literally translated: The Man Who Saves the World). In a dizzying opening sequence we’re introduced to our two intergalatic heros, Murat and Ali, as they engage vague antagonistic outer space forces in space battle while accompanied by an onslaught of rapid-fire English subtitles that stay on screen JUST long enough for you to realize that they don’t really make any sense. But WOAH — lookit those space-battle effects! They’re as good as anything you’ll see in Star Wars…because they ARE from Star Wars. Murat and Ali bob and weave purposefully in their cockpits while disorientingly mismatched SW footage unspools behind them in rear-projection. After blowing up the Death Star (?…in the first five minutes?) M and A crash land on what you might take for the desert-planet, Tatooine…but those aren’t sand people, jawas or storm troopers. Instead TSW gives us what look like theme park cartoon characters, giant red gummi bears, skelletons, mummys and one Vadar-lite supreme being who spends almost all of his screen time talking about how he will “rule the universe for all time.”  There’s a stupidly grinning mute love interest, lots of homoerotic banter about sexual prowess and a real corker of a training montage in which our heros punch rocks (with bare fists!), smash bolders (in two!) and bounce and leap around with large stones tied to their feet. As a matter of fact, there is an unbelievable amount of bouncing going on here as if somone was obsessively determined to utilize the prop department’s trampoline to the fullest extent.  The headache-inducing editing seems carefully calibrated to keep you confused and disoriented and the costumes look more appropriate for Judge Dredd or The Greatest American Hero than for SW. From time to time cuts of John Williams’ march from Raiders of the Lost Ark pops up to trick your imagination into believing something dramatic or heroic is occurring. But what does TSW have to do with SW as YOU know it? Not much. That said, TSW is definitely a pop-culture artifact that deserves your attention assuming you aren’t epileptic and have a plenty of dramimine on hand. TSW is mostly available as a bootleg title along with other Turkish rip-offs of The Exorcist, Star Trek and Spider-Man.

See the (over-dubbed) training montage for yourself: 

For more disorienting international rip-off fun see also:
The Dragon Lives Again

~ by Number5ive on April 7, 2009.

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