Karateci Kız (1973)

Zeynep (Filiz Akın, who starred in 116 movies in just over thirteen years and even survived being stabbed in the leg by an obsessed fan — she even went on stage to perform that same night!) is a mute girl content to be a florist with her father. They’ve been saving money for an operation that will allow her to speak, but one night five men break in, steal the money and kill her father. She refuses to testify against them because she wants them to all get away with it so she can hunt them down herself.

What really makes her story kind of Ben Parker tragic is that she falls for a man named Murat who teaches her how to shoot a gun and to defend herself with karate. He never tells her that he’s a policeman, despite being set up by his superiors to get her to testify. In what is either committing way too much to being undercover or just really taking advantage of his job, they get married. The five men? They show up and kill him.

Oh man, Turkish cinema, I love you so.

The bad guys in this film are so evil that one of them steals a baby and threatens to break its neck if anyone gets in his way. You will not feel badly at all, even if you’re the most liberal of left-leaning people, when they all get their karate chopped and bullet blazed comeuppance.

The really strange thing is that after the five men attacked Karate Girl, she could speak again, which really seems like a backward way of retelling They Call Her One-Eye. This one also doesn’t have the heroine getting assaulted or porn inserts, but it does have the kind of extended fight scenes that you come to these movies for.

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