“Distinguished by its muscular technical brio and rich, integral sense of place.” – Variety
Eleven-year-old Aslan is somewhat of an outsider in his Anatolian village, brimming with self-confidence and attitude. After he rescues a wounded fighting dog that’s been left for dead – the titular Sivas – he finds his furry companion bestows a new status on him. But when, at the urging of his family member, he takes Sivas to the region’s illegal national dog-fighting championships, he’s in for a hard lesson on the realities of life.
Winning the Special Jury Prize at the Venice Film Festival, Sivas is a startling coming-of-age film, with a compelling central performance from non-professional actor Doğan İzci, who also picked up Venice’s Bastio D’Oro Best Actor Award. This fictional debut from Kaan Müjdeci – whose 2011 documentary Fathers & Sons provided its inspiration – is a formidably honest work that offers its characters, and viewers, no easy answers.