The Greek Film Society of Sydney Presents the 18th Thessaloniki Documentary Festival Regional Event, a selection of contemporary Greek documentaries.
All screenings will take place at the Cyprus Community Club of NSW, 58 Stanmore Rd, Stanmore.
Thursday, 7 July , 7 pm
Golden Dawn: A Personal Affair 90’ (Dir. Angélique Kourounis)
“What’s in the mind of the neo-Nazi in your neighbourhood?” asks a Greek journalist, who has been researching the Greek neo-Nazi Golden Dawn party for years. “My partner is Jewish, one son is gay, the other one an anarchist, and I’m a left-wing feminist, daughter of an immigrant. If Golden Dawn comes to power our problem will be, in which wagon will they transport us.” This documentary focuses on the economic crisis, political instability and family relations as it tries to discover “what’s in the minds of Golden Dawn members who are presented as victims of the system”.
Thursday, 14 July, 7 pm
I… the Problem 53’ (Dir. Alexandros Markou)
Over a decade ago, almost 500 children (most of them Roma from Albania, picked up before the Olympic Games by the police while begging) disappeared into the Agia Varvara Orphanage in Athens. Amongst them were Nikos, Alex and Tony, protagonists of this documentary which focuses on their lives today as well as in the past. These fellow humans either never knew their families or were sold as slaves to human traffickers who forced them to beg at traffic lights. The documentary reveals how they grew up alone on the streets and in orphanages, how they live today and the problems they face.
A Second Chance 61’ (Dir. Menelaos Karamaghiolis)
“You enter the prison yard. On one bench, you see inmates planning a future perfect crime. On another they’re talking about a fix, and further on about Kalashnikovs. Then suddenly in one corner you see a huge Lithuanian inmate, with a few others, playing chess.” These are the words of a music teachers at the Avlona juvenile prison. In real life is there a second chance? A Lithuanian teenager, an inmate in a juvenile prison in a strange country he’s never seen before and whose language he can’t speak. He’ll either rot in his cell or find a way to re-define his life. In the prison school he’ll try to learn Greek, he’ll discover hidden talents and one day he may even study at the Polytechnic University. Will he succeed? Over three years, as he strives to reach these illusive goals, the camera documents his struggle to start a new life.
Thursday, 21th July, 7 pm
Suspended People 28’ (Dir. Stratis Vogiatzis & Thekla Malamou)
As long as Roma live apart, as long as their destiny is not shared with ours, as long as our dreams never mingle, they will go on existing in the same way. Exiled for thousands of years from the societies they came into contact with, they are doomed to live on the margins. This place of exile has gradually become their homeland, the place where they dream, where their dreams are buried in the ground. Sabiha, a charismatic woman in the heart of Drosero (on the outskirts of Xanthi), decided to become active about things happening around her, to demand equal rights for Roma, but also to change the failings of her own culture.
Metamorphoses 50’ (Dir. Vangelis Efthymiou)
Three young people decide to create a classical music festival in Molivos, Lesvos. They set their aims high, inviting noted young musicians from different countries, such as the famous soprano Marlis Petersen. Will their enterprise succeed in this small corner of Greece?
Thursday, 28 July, 7 pm
Skoros: Anti-Consumption in Crisis 20’ (Dir. Athina Souli)
This collaborative ethnographic film is about Skoros, an anti-consumerist collective in Exarchia, Athens, that runs a small space where people can visit and take or exchange things and services without the usual rules of reciprocity. After the Greek economic crisis, a new type of activity for the group, centred on the ‘here and now’, concentrates less on learning to live differently and more on the urgent need to offer solidarity to a growing number of people living close to or under the poverty line.
Whispers of the Sky 74’ (Dir. Maro Anastopoulou)
On the remote island of Amorgos, people toil and enjoy life in their own unique way. Captain Konstantis and Leonidas, the shepherd, have lived their whole life in this small corner of the world and yet they don’t know each other. However, their everyday life is determined by a common factor, the signs of the sky. The islanders carry with them centuries-old knowledge about forecasting. These are the signs of the sky, the wind, the stars, the clouds and the sea that anticipate tomorrow. The eternal cycle of life is the cycle of the seasons, birth and death, but also a continual reminder of the simple beauty that floats unperturbed about us. No one day is the same as the next.
*All films are subtitled in English.
** Admission to all documentaries in July will be free to paid-up members and new
members who take up at least one month’s membership of $5.