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Out of work and freshly divorced, Selim returns to his home town of Izmir. He refuses to make plans for the future and roams around aimlessly. Wherever he goes, he is confronted by the past: in his family and with former classmates, he meets an ex-girlfriend and an old acquaintance from his days in the army. When after an accident in the harbour a caustic stench pervades the town, many of the inhabitants leave. Selim stays – and recognizes ever more clearly what opportunities life has to offer. The Gulf
can be seen as a parable on the current situation in Turkish society and asks the question how much hope is left for individuals in a world of ever-present apocalyptic scenarios.