Bingöl Elmas: My Letter to Pippa

Italian Pippa Bacca, peace activist dressed in a wedding gown, decided to travel to Jerusalem. By hitchhiking. She did not make it. In Turkey she was raped and killed. Bingöl Elmas, Turkish filmmaker, decided to finish the travel of Pippa, wearing a black wedding dress as a sign of sorrow.

What we as viewers get from this journey is a fragmented picture of Turkey today, at least as it can be read through the meetings Bingöl has with truck drivers, men and women and children in villages she passes, old people, young people, farmers and business men. She is constantly being followed by her crew colleagues, they film and she films.

The director is a good talker, she gets easy into discussions with the men, and she makes them talk. Some think that they can get a night with her, others are sceptical to her intentions and several warns her to be alone with men on the highway! Of course the camera to a certain degree excludes the most ”chauvinistic” dialogues to develop but this is luckily not the only target for the journey. The scenes where she talks to women, especially the old ladies and to families are the most interesting and authentic as they unfold in a very light and unstressed manner.

The film is part of the series ”The Other Turkey” made for arte France. On the website below the intention of the series and its context is explained.

Turkey, 60 mins., 2010

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Tue Steen Müller
Tue Steen Müller

Müller, Tue Steen
Documentary Consultant and Critic, DENMARK

Worked with documentary films for more than 20 years at the Danish Film Board, as press officer, festival representative and film consultant/commissioner. Co-founder of Balticum Film and TV Festival, Filmkontakt Nord, Documentary of the EU and EDN (European Documentary Network).
Awards: 2004 the Danish Roos Prize for his contribution to the Danish and European documentary culture. 2006 an award for promoting Portuguese documentaries. 2014 he received the EDN Award “for an outstanding contribution to the development of the European documentary culture”. 2016 The Cross of the Knight of the Order for Merits to Lithuania. 2019 a Big Stamp at the 15th edition of ZagrebDox. 2021 receipt of the highest state decoration, Order of the Three Stars, Fourth Class, for the significant contribution to the development and promotion of Latvian documentary cinema outside Latvia. In 2022 he received an honorary award at DocsBarcelona’s 25th edition having served as organizer and programmer since the start of the festival.
From 1996 until 2005 he was the first director of EDN (European Documentary Network). From 2006 a freelance consultant and teacher in workshops like Ex Oriente, DocsBarcelona, Archidoc, Documentary Campus, Storydoc, Baltic Sea Forum, Black Sea DocStories, Caucadoc, CinéDOC Tbilisi, Docudays Kiev, Dealing With the Past Sarajevo FF as well as programme consultant for the festivals Magnificent7 in Belgrade, DOCSBarcelona, Verzio Budapest, Message2Man in St. Petersburg and DOKLeipzig. Teaches at the Zelig Documentary School in Bolzano Italy.

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