Entry updated 2 October 2023. Tagged: Film.
["Kilink in Istanbul"] Turkish film (1967). Atadeniz Film. Directed by Yilmaz Atadeniz. Written by Çetin Inanç. Cast includes Irfan Atasoy, Feridun Çölgeçen, Yildirim Gencer, Pervin Par and Muzaffer Tema. 71 minutes. Black and white.
The Kilink films are based on the Italian photo comic Killing, which began in 1966 and concerns the violent adventures of the brutal skeleton-suited Villain with that name.
Kilink (Gencer) is the head of a criminal gang who dresses in a skeleton costume; when moving between countries he travels in a coffin, wrapped in bandages. He has no Superpowers, though occasionally impersonates people by wearing extremely realistic face masks. We see him kill Scientist Dr Houloussi (Çölgeçen) then steal his research, intending to build a Weapon that will enable him to rule or destroy the world; however, he discovers that key information is missing. Meanwhile, at Dr Houloussi's grave, his son Orhan (Atasoy) vows revenge but wonders how this can be achieved – whereupon there is a puff of smoke and bearded sage Shazam Boloum appears, announcing himself as the protector of justice and avenger of those who defend evil. He tells Orhan that by uttering "Shazam!" he will gain the powers of Hercules, Zeus, Neptune, Artemis and Mars (see Heroes, Gods and Demons): Orhan speaks thus and is transformed into Superhero (see Superheroes), complete with mask, cape and a costume with a large "S" on the chest. He is now invulnerable to bullets, able to fly, and can lift heavy objects; but Boloum warns that he may only transform at times of great danger and when there are no witnesses, otherwise his Superpowers will be lost.
Kilink has learnt that the completed research is with one of Dr Houloussi's colleagues, Professor Cemil (Tema), whose daughter Guile (Par) is Orhan's girlfriend. Both are kidnapped, with Guile being Tortured until her father gives up the information. Kilink then takes them to his Island hideout, where the weapon is housed, to incorporate the formula. The film then abruptly ends: the story continues in Kilink Ucan Adama Karsi ["Kilink vs the Flying Man"] (1967), released a few months later.
Kilink uçan adama karsi begins with a 20-minute reprise of the previous film. The story continues with the weapon – a Death Ray – being tested: we see it successfully blasting a rockface. It is then turned on an approaching boat which contains Orhan and a comic-relief fisherman (see Humour). They jump out just in time, but are captured and put with the other prisoners. As the voluble fisherman will not fall asleep, Orhan has to knock him out so he can transform into Superhero and escape. Sending the other prisoners away on a boat, Superhero bursts into the room where Kilink and his men are partying with bikini-clad beauties: the weapon is turned on him – it now behaves like a flamethrower – but he evades it and destroys the Underground laboratory. Kilink flees to the mainland in a motorboat and there gets up to more mischief until a final confrontation with Superhero, at the end of which Kilink falls to his death. As many more films followed, this would prove temporary.
Kilink Istanbul'da and Kilink uçan adama karsi are really one long film split in two. Its main virtue is the character of Kilink: Gencer gives a solid performance, though it might be argued the skeleton suit steals the show; in comparison, Atasoy has to wear something that looks thrown together from assorted superhero costumes. Though the Cliché-heavy story is reminiscent of US Serial Films from the 1930s and 1940s, the target audience is clearly older, Kilink's violence being more brutal. There is also semi-nudity and Sex: Kilink has the ability to turn women evil through lovemaking, which his girlfriend (whom he genuinely seems to care for) seems fine with. On the other hand, Superhero's action scenes – usually fights with Kilink's minions – are dull and old-fashioned, with cheap special effects.
Several other Kilink films were released in the late 1960s, not all involving the team that produced the films discussed above, though sharing a similar lax attitude to copyright. At least two had genre elements: Sihirbazlar Krali Mandrake Killing'in Pesinde ["Mandrake, The King of Illusions – Killing's Pursuit"] (1967), which was made by a different team (note the "Killing" spelling), with Killing/Kilink being even more unpleasant here; Mandrake is clearly based on Lee Falk's Mandrake the Magician. Another film, Kilink Frankestayn ve Dr. No'ya Karsi ["Kilink vs. Frankenstein and Dr. No"] (1968) did star Gencer in the lead role, though the director and writer was Nuri Akinci. The plot involves Dr No – presumably referencing the titular James Bond villain of Dr No (1962) and here played by an actor in yellowface – opening the Frankenstein Monster's grave and successfully reviving him by wiring up young women to his corpse. A couple more movies appeared in the 1970s, using the Killing spelling; then Bay Kilink Istanbul'da (2011) some decades later. [SP]
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