The Cut

Director: Fatih Akin
Year Released: 2014
Rating: 2.0

A blacksmith (actually) named Nazaret (Tahar Rahim) is torn away from his family and daughters during the Armenian Genocide and forced to work as a slave, witnesses many atrocities (including a woman raped by a soldier), miraculously survives an execution attempt (he gets his vocal cords cut) and then travels many miles (through Cuba and the United States) in an attempt to locate his missing kids. It's good that Akin's covering the (often denied) genocide, but actual historical details are kept at a minimum, focusing instead on Nazaret's resilience (reminding me of Angelina Jolie's Unbroken) and ability to survive numerous beatings and escape harrowing scenarios. For all of Nazaret's problems, however, the movie is never quite able to convey the emotions associated with the experiences - Akin's approach is far too remote - and it doesn't help that Nazaret's inability to speak also acts as a distancing device (this might have worked better in written form).