Dünyayı Kurtaran Adam (The Man Who Saved the World) is a 1982 Turkish adventure film also known as Turkish Star Wars. It’s also one of the most bizarre low-fi science fiction films this side of 2001’s The Lost Skeleton of Cadavra.
Via DangerousMinds: Directed by Çetin Inanç and starring Turkish action superstar Cüneyt Arkin, The Man Who Saved The World is an amazingly over-the-top knock-off of George Lucas’s Star Wars. Popularly known as Turkish Star Wars for reasons that are clearly apparent, this Turkish slab of cinematic taffy stretches the boundaries of disbelief to the breaking point. And that’s what makes it a far more entertaining film than the one it rips off. I’ve forgotten most of the original Star Wars but I’ll never forget Cüneyt Arkin doing battle with a gigantic psychopathic shag carpet using only a cardboard sabre (completely lightless) and some well-placed karate chops.
Turkish film writer Evrim Esroy’s sums up Turkish Star Wars nicely:
Director Çetin İnanç‘s attempt to create the ultimate Turkish science fiction epic has all the trademarks of the genre: a mash-up of American cinema tradition and Turkish mythology bound together by the insane desire to reach infinitely beyond its microscopic budget. Two pilots who find their ships mysteriously crashing on an alien planet end up fighting an evil dictatorial emperor plotting to destroy Earth. But no summary can do this wild mix justice. From its z-grade, beautiful inhabitants to the endless borrowed shots literally spliced in from the actual STAR WARS, this is lo-fi filmmaking at an unparalleled best.
The movie was a bomb when it was first released, but became a cult hot in the US after it was picked up by the improv troupe Foleyvision who provided a new soundtrack live in house.
The ‘Turkish Star Wars’ film was recently screened at the Alamo Draft House and gained even more followers (no doubt riding the fortuitous release of Episode VII: The Force Awakens). Nevertheless, unless you live near one of the Alamo Draft House cinemas or the hip equivalent, it is much harder to come by this obscurity.
Fortunately, J. Sprig has made a dub of the film, replacing the audio track with a playlist of psych and punk rock Turkish music… and it is awesome (man the soundtrack is unbelievable!).