Kutlug Ataman – Ruhuma asla AKA Never My Soul (2001)

“Never my soul” is a phrase taken from the cliche sentence the good-Turkish-girl character says to her rapist in many old Turkish movies – “You can have my body but never my soul!”.

The film has at its centre a transsexual who is pretending to be Türkan Şoray, the real-life super diva of the Turkish Cinema. The transsexual’s true life is similar to the melodramatic plot of a Türkan Şoray movie. She was born a boy, beaten up by her military father throughout her childhood for exhibiting “effeminate” behaviour, taken to psychiatrists at the age of thirteen to cure her of her sexual “deviance,” and later beaten and tortured by a notorious Istanbul police chief. Now living in Lausanne, her kidneys have failed and she is on dialysis. She has to make her living through prostitution.

Never My Soul imitates both documentary and fiction, but it is neither of these. All roles and positions involved in filmmaking are shifted and parallaxed on purpose to such a degree that the work itself becomes a transvestite. The story is told in a very stark and in-your-face manner, and mimics some of the style of a classical Turkish melodrama.


English harcoded.

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