The independent Turkish short, In a Time for Sleep (2016) is the latest release by Azerbaijani filmmaker, Tofiq Rzayev, known best for The Girl in the Woods (2015) and winner of the 2015 International Euro Film Festival’s award for Best Short Fiction, Aftermath (2014). Rzayev has created a multitude of short films throughout his career which often address interesting and complex themes about life, relationships and death.
In a Time for Sleep kicks off with couple Leyla (Goknur Danishik) and unimpressed boyfriend, Arda (Mehmet Fatih Güven)arguing over dinner which Leyla has prepared in celebration of their one-month anniversary. This quickly escalates into a heated confrontation, yielding serious consequences, the results of which alter the course of Leyla’s life.
Initially the film is unpersuasive and lacks realism and depth in both its story and characters. There is no real backstory or explanation as to why there is such a rift between the lovers and the reason for the argument between Arda and Leyla, being the anniversary of their one-month relationship, seems implausible. However, In a Time for Sleep does thereafter take shape and becomes more engaging as it assumes a feminist standpoint.
The film’s visuals display real talent with wistful imagery and stunningly beautiful cinematography. Although its premise makes it difficult to become involved at first, the concepts that are later communicated as the story develops which explore the fundamental differences between men and women give the film standing and precipitates a platform for further discussion on the ideology behind gender and their differences.