The Zolberg Institute on Migration and Mobility is pleased to host a screening of Fatih Akin’s The Edge of Heaven, followed by a short lecture by Professor Noah Isenberg. Professor Isenberg will discuss the career of German director Fatih Akin, focusing specifically on his 2007 film The Edge of Heaven (Auf der anderen Seite), part of his Love-Hate-The Devil trilogy, which was awarded best screenplay at Cannes that year.
Shuttling back and forth between Istanbul and Hamburg, The Edge of Heaven is structured around two deaths and the ensuing collisions of three separate pairs of characters, each of which is strained and eventually estranged or separated by death: a Turkish father and son, Ali and Nejat Aksu; a Turkish mother and daughter, Yeter and Ayten Öztürk; and a German mother and daughter, Susanne and Lotte Staub. Like much of Akin’s work, the film wrestles with question of national and cultural identity, zeroing in on a group of characters who migrate freely across borders but whose sense of place is anything but settled.
Noah Isenberg is Professor of Culture and Media at Eugene Lang College, where he also directs the Screen Studies program. He is the author, most recently, of We’ll Always Have Casablanca: The Life, Legend, and Afterlife of Hollywood’s Most Beloved Movie (Norton, 2017), which earned a spot on the Los Angeles Times bestseller list and was named an Editor’s Choice by the New York Times Book Review. The recipient of a 2015-1016 NEH Public Scholar Award, his writing has appeared in The Nation, The New Republic, the Times Literary Supplement, the Wall Street Journal, and the New York Times.