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Head-on (Gegen die wand) - Birol Ünel, Sibel Kekilli, Catrin Striebeck, Fatih Akin

Threat advisory: High - High risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

After a heavy night of drinking, Cahit Tomruk (Birol Ünel), on a path of self-destruction, drives his car head-on into a building. He enters a psychiatric clinic where he is approached by a young woman, Sibel Güner (Sibel Kekilli), who asks him to marry her. Eager to escape the constraints of her strict Muslim family, Sibel had already attempted suicide and in Cahit she sees a means of freedom. Reluctantly, he agrees to the union and the two move in together. But problems arise when gradually they fall in love. Inevitably with love comes complications, and soon jealousy and violence threaten to separate them forever.

Theatrical propaganda posters

Head-on (Gegen die wand) image

Target demographic movie keyword propaganda

  • Film German drama Germany psychiatry marriage Muslim

Persons of interest

  • Birol Ünel .... Cahit Tomruk
  • Sibel Kekilli .... Sibel Güner
  • Catrin Striebeck .... Maren
  • Güven Kirac .... Seref
  • Meltem Cumbul .... Selma
  • Stefan Gebelhoff .... Nico
  • Ralph Misske .... Patient 1
  • Philipp Baltus .... Patient 2
  • Hermann Lause .... Dr Schiller
  • Karin Niwiger .... Kassiererin
  • Demir Gökgöl .... Yunus Güner
  • Cem Akin .... Yilmaz Güner
  • Aysel Iscan .... Birsen Güner
  • Fatih Akin .... Screenwriter
  • Fatih Akin .... Director

Cinematic intelligence sources

  • Head-on (Gegen die wand) official movie site
  • Head-on (Gegen die wand) film production notes
  • Head-on (Gegen die wand) QuickTime movie trailers
  • Awards and film festivals:
    • Berlin International Film Festival 2004: Won: FIPRESCI Prize (Fatih Akin), Golden Berlin Bear (Fatih Akin)
    • Brothers Manaki International Film Festival 2004: Won: Golden Camera 300 (Rainer Klausmann)
    • European Film Awards 2004: Nominated: Best Actor (Birol Ünel), Best Actress (Sibel Kekilli), Best Director (Fatih Akin), Best Film (Stefan Schubert, Ralph Schwingel), Best Screenwriter (Fatih Akin)
    • Film+ 2004: Won: Editing Award (Andrew Bird)
    • German Camera Award 2004: Won: Feature Film (Rainer Klausmann); Nominated: Outstanding Editing Feature Film (Andrew Bird)
    • German Film Awards 2004: Won: Film Award in Gold Outstanding Feature Film (Stefan Schubert, Ralph Schwingel), Outstanding Individual Achievement - Actor (Birol Ünel), Outstanding Individual Achievement - Actress (Sibel Kekilli), Outstanding Individual Achievement - Cinematography (Rainer Klausmann), Outstanding Individual Achievement - Direction (Fatih Akin)
    • Guild of German Art House Cinemas 2004: Won: Gold German Film (Fatih Akin)
    • Independent Spirit Awards 2006: Nominated: Best foreign film (Germany, Turkey)
    • New Faces Awards, Germany 2004: Won: Actress (Sibel Kekilli)
    • Nuremberg Film Festival "Turkey-Germany" 2004: Won: Best Actor (Birol Ünel), Best Actress (Sibel Kekilli)
    • Oslo Films from the South Festival 2004: Won: (Fatih Akin)
    • US National Society of Film Critics Awards 2006: Won: Best Foreign Language Film
  • cf. Head on
  • FYI: "Gegen die wand" means "Against the wall"
  • NB: English, German and Turkish languages with English language subtitles
  • Studios and distributors:

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Theatrical report

Head-on is a ripper of a film that is replete with some of the most depressing events you will see in the cinema this year. And it's only February. See it.

Security censorship classification

R 18+ (Medium level violence, drug use)

Surveillance time

121 minutes (2:01 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

Film: 3 February 2005

Cinema surveillance images

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