After Asli (Kanan Kir) from Turkey secretly marries her Lebanese boyfriend Saeed (Roger Hazard). Against her family’s wishes, her promise to live with him is shaken. As her religious fundamentalism overshadows their relationship.
This romantic drama begins in Germany in the late 1990s.
Over five years, it shows the relationship between Native Turkish-German medical students (Kanan Kir) and middle-class Lebanese immigrant Saeed (charismatic Roger Hazard). German writer and director Anne Zora Berached (24 weeks). Which is based her script on the life of the actual United 93 kidnapper, Ziad Jara. The five chapters of the film are based on the events of September 11.
The couple instantly hit chemistry at a university party. Saeed asks Asley to reveal the most dangerous thing he has ever done, which initially shows his penchant for risk.
“No woman actually wants to marry a pilot – she never comes home”. Saeed’s mother said when she threatened to leave dental school to fly a plane. Over the years, Saeed became more and more mysterious and disappeared in Yemen for weeks. He stopped drinking and started teaching Islam to his friends.
The story is told from Asli’s point of view. With Berached’s handheld remote camera highlighting her point of view and the instability of the relationship. The director treated the film as an exercise in empathy, hoping to complicate and humanize the terrorist. However, this is marred by the obvious red flags they place in each section. Said’s trajectory becomes a predetermined conclusion.
Twenty years after the 2001 terrorist attacks in the US and the events of that fateful September day:
They still haunt the world. In his fictional story, however, Copilot takes a more intimate approach. That focuses on the five years of the life of one of the Lebanese terrorists. Here named Saeed (Roger Hazard), but still clearly based on United kidnapper Ziad Jarrah.
In particular, the script (co-written with directors Anne Zora Berached and Stephanie Misrahi) depicts events. That are based on the experiences of Saeed’s friend (later wife) Saeed Asli (based on Ziad’s partner, Aysel Sengan). Played with charm and poise by Kanan Kir.
Asley loves Said so much and seduces by their strong relationship. That he rejects his mother’s aggressive racist objections to dating and then secretly marries him. As their relationship developed over the years (each labelled with their screen title card). It became clear that Said is developing a fundamental trend.
The film presents this not as a splendid religious insight. But as a slow trickle of obsessive ideas and minor behavioural changes. That Asley can – at least at first – ignore, can’t (and probably won’t) believe that the romantic and kind boy. Anyone in love might be capable of such cruelty. If he was an accomplice in his actions, it would only be out of naivety.
Cinematographer Christopher Aun depicts the dichotomous nature of Asley’s life.
The colourful euphoric culmination of a surreal emotional connection. He was neatly wraps up in a beautiful fantasy sequence early in their relationship. In which they walk hand in hand down the road and pretend as if piloting an aeroplane.
Then literally rose from the ground. And the dark shadows of his loneliness and confusion. As he begin’s to see that Saeed isn’t who he thought he was. As you can see with your own eyes. Copilot is not a study of the devastating effects of radicalism – mainly off-screen. Than a beautifully crafted sensitive study of the rampant and unstable effects of love.
Copilot is often a disturbing film. He uses cinematic conventions to confuse supposed Western audiences. And like some unsubscribed dialogue: Asli doesn’t speak Arabic. So they – and we – don’t know anything Said and his family knew when they visited, they say. (Asley and Saeed share German and English as common languages.) He uses guesswork romance fiction to distract us as Asley is distracted. From the realities of romance. From whatever is happening beyond their competence.
Copilot is at least anti-romantic. Instead of getting lost in a love fantasy. This is a heavy and tragic blow to the harsh reality of women’s lives. Relationships with men can be fraught with danger, and vulnerability is sometimes fraught with great danger. He tore an inevitable bubble of film madness. Copilot is a tough and challenging film.