Make Believe Seattle: POUNDCAKE isn’t Subtle, But It Sure is Effective

The closing night film at Make Believe Seattle is the latest from genre auteur Onur Tukel, who isn’t exactly known for his subtlety. This is perhaps the least subtle of his films I’ve ever seen, but that doesn’t mean it’s not effective. On the contrary, it’s extremely effective in its own on-the-nose, often overly talky way.

I read one description of the film call it a politically charged slasher satire written and directed in the style of Woody Allen… and that description isn’t far off. The dialog heavy film most certainly features a monologuing style of classic Allen films, though I’m not sure there are any Woody films about an 80s-esque slasher villain who literally fucks straight white men to death (insert inappropriate Woody Allen joke here). Full of explicit commentary on race, sexuality, bigotry, self-hate, and gender, there is nary a moment where someone isn’t talking during the film. Whether scenes of podcasts, comedians, or family dinners, everyone has something to say. Tukel himself delivers tons of commentary through the film, even while being pegged by his on-screen wife.

Taking on the fragility of all types of people with straight white men as the most primary target, Poundcake is not for everyone. While the message is important for sure, it’s certainly got a style and abrasiveness that will rub a ton of people the wrong way. However, those able to reconcile the absurdity and the very real issues the film is dealing with will definitely find a truly unique and singular film.

Race isn’t only about race.

True, look at Darius Rucker.

Poundcake played at the first annual Make Believe Film Festival in Seattle. Check out more about the festival at

Justin has been running websites since his first Geocities site in 1994, but only did he ever start covering anything of substance years later. After he stopped regularly running local concerts in Northern NJ and the greater Philly area, he knew he needed to step up his writing game if he expected to continue to get free music to listen to. He writes regularly here and at Cinapse, as well as contributing to a few other sites on occasion. He likes music, film, the Philadelphia Eagles, the 76ers, talking about Criminal Justice, reading Intelligence Report, and his family... not in that order. His beautiful wife is far more talented than he is and his kids far more adorable... and crazy.
thepaintedman on Emailthepaintedman on Facebookthepaintedman on Instagramthepaintedman on Twitterthepaintedman on Wordpress

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *