We always have a choice. At that point, we can either make the right decision or the wrong one. The outcome depends on our choice. While we hold power to make a decision, the outcome often affects others around us. On a larger canvas, we can never make a decision favourable to everyone. Someone or the other is bound to hold a grudge. Netflix’s Turkish film, Grudge (originally titled Kin), narrates the story of one such incident that creates a ripple of hatred. Through its intricate plot, it binds the incidents of the past and present that evidently affect the future.
Directed by Turkan Derya, Grudge (or Kin) is a crime thriller film made for Netflix. Let’s find out more.
‘Grudge / Kin’ Plot Summary
The film begins with an award ceremony to decorate Istanbul Chief inspector Harun Celiktan (Yilmaz Erdogan) as the police officer of the year. Harun’s senior and best friend, Cevat (Ahmet Mümtaz Taylan), congratulates Harun on their way to the station. Cevat informs Harun that he will soon be promoted to Chief Superintendent and thus avoid any conflict in the meantime.
Later that night, Harun’s closely knit team celebrates Harun’s achievement. Harun leaves the celebration in a taxi when the driver abducts him and drives towards the woods. Taxi driver Ceyhun Arik attacks Harun with a knife. In defense, Harun accidentally stabs Ceyhun in the middle of nowhere. Harun brings out his phone to inform the authorities when Cevat’s call interrupts his conscious decision.
Cevat informs Harun that the ministry is keen to promote Harun, and he will hear the good news soon. In his desire to get a promotion, Harun doesn’t report his murder. Instead, he tampers with the crime scene and wipes out his fingerprints. Harun leaves the body in the woods and disappears.
The following day, Inspector Yadigar wakes up Harun and reports a corpse hanging from a crane on the construction site right outside the Police HQ. Harun arrives at the scene and finds out that the corpse belongs to Ceyhun Arik, the taxi driver he killed last night. While no evidence points at Harun, he tries to find the Crane Killer before the police so that he can wipe out the clues that may jeopardize his promotion.
Major Spoilers Ahead
Who was the Crane Killer?
Through CCTV footage, the investigators found a suspect stuffing the taxi driver’s body in the cab. The police chased the suspect, and Harun accidentally shot in self-defense when the suspect tried to attack Harun. Before dying, the suspect told Harun that an unknown person had hired him to drive the cab from one place to another. He didn’t have an idea about the corpse.
Later, Yadigar found a common link between both the deceased. He revealed that both of them were registered to a casting agency, Nir Agency, and were under the influence of drugs. A Class A substance known as Metopon (meth) showed up in their blood report. Harun followed the trial and threatened his informer, Serat, to hand him the information. Serat revealed that the drug, often marketed as meth, was a deadly substance that no one wanted except one film actor, Gul Cankir (Duygu Sarisin).
Through Nir agency, Harun tried to contact Gul, but afterward, she called Harun to a Macca Club in Kadıköy. At the deserted club, Harun found three dates marked on a map linked to the murder of three police officers. The murders reminded Harun of a past case where he and Cavet falsely accused a waiter of poisoning seven people inside a restaurant. However, before Harun could connect the dots, Gul Cankir showed up at the station and confessed to killing the taxi driver. She called herself “The Crane Killer.”
What did Gul want?
Gul Cankir (originally named Gülendam Turel) was the waiter’s daughter, Ramazan Turel, who Harun and Cavet framed for poisoning seven people. Gul spoke to Harun in private and revealed that her father had to face a jail sentence because of the police officers. Because of their mistake, Ramazan was brutally killed in prison.
Gul held a grudge and took revenge on the department. She killed the three police officers and hired the taxi driver to kill Harun. However, things got complicated when Harun killed the driver in self-defense. Gul decided to play a little game and blackmailed Harun. She asked Harun to murder Cavet in exchange for the compelling video of Harun killing the taxi driver. The footage could ruin Harun’s career, and thus he had a hard choice to make. In her rage, Gul wanted to get rid of all those investigators who falsely accused her father.
However, when Harun refused to harm his senior, Gul took charge of the affairs and bombed Cavet’s car. After the explosion, she quickly exposed Harun and made his video public. The police chased Harun while in HQ, inspector Yadigar found another earth-shattering truth.
Was Ramazan Turel innocent? Who poisoned the Seven Men?
Harun chased Gul and reached the Macca Club. He found out that Gul had injected herself with a heavy dose of Metopon and quickly faded away. In her last moments, Gul revealed the identity of her brother about whom Harun had inquired earlier.
At the HQ, Yadigar found out the shocking truth about Ramazan Turel’s case. The investigation was led by Chief Cevat Tunahanli and Harun Celiktan. The other three murdered cops were working on the same case. The dead taxi driver and the suspect on the roof, both shot by Harun, were prime witnesses in Turel’s case. Yadigar surmised that the killer, probably Turel’s children, were taking vengeance for their father. Turel had two children, Gülendam and Emre.
After his adoption, Emre changed his name to Tuncay Kokdemir and joined the police department to avenge his father’s murderers. Yadigar confronted Tuncay with the truth, but to fulfill his ulterior motive, Tuncay shot Yadigar and kidnapped Harun’s son, Aslan.
At the park, Tuncay confessed to poisoning the seven men at his father’s workplace because those monsters ill-treated his father and accused him of stealing money. Those men made fun of their father and humiliated him. In anger, Tuncay poisoned the soup his father served those seven men. However, instead of arresting Tuncay, the police took away Ramazan. Tuncay screamed and pleaded guilty, but no one took him seriously. The officers threw Ramazan in prison, where he was killed. At a tender age, Tuncay and Gul swore to take revenge from all those who falsely framed Ramazan, and that was it. Harun was the last man standing.
‘Grudge / Kin’ Ending, Explained
From the beginning, the film suggested that Tuncay knew about Harun killing the taxi driver and the suspect on the roof. Tuncay, on the other hand, aided Harun and tampered with the evidence to save his senior. Though, at the end of Grudge, it was underlined that Tuncay’s efforts weren’t made out of respect but were all part of Tuncay’s sinister plan. Tuncay pleaded with Harun to shoot him as he promised his sister to kill the real killer. However, instead of taking revenge for all the misery, Harun made a moral choice and dropped his gun.
Harun realized his mistake. He could have stopped Cavet from framing Ramazan when he had a gut feeling that Ramazan wasn’t the killer. But Harun didn’t. His lack of righteousness destroyed a family and pushed two innocent children into a pit of despair. The ripples that destroyed everything. Harun finally made a moral choice to end the cycle of grudges. But for Tuncay, his world was already in ruins. He didn’t hesitate and shot himself.
The police arrested Harun in front of his young son, Alsan. Maybe Harun wouldn’t face a harsh trial because he killed the taxi driver and the suspect in defense. But his lack of moral judgment and failure to stand against injustice would cost him his job as a law enforcement officer. The film ended with a flashback sequence when Harun first met Tuncay and hired him for his team. Harun tried to do good, but in the end, he was as flawed as all of us are.
Grudge (originally titled Kin) is a 2021 crime thriller film directed by Turkan Derya. It is streaming on Netflix.