The European Festival of Greek Documentaries – GrecDoc – will take place in Paris (health conditions permitting) from September 18th to 20th. This year’s festival is sponsored by Rosviros Manthoulis. Michel Noll, the event’s founder and director, presents this second season: “This year, because of Covid 19, it is in the autumn and not the spring that we offer audiences in Paris, but also in other French cities, an excellent mix of unseen Greek documentaries.”He then added: “The diversity of subjects, the different ways of seeing, the multiplicity of forms epitomise a Greece full of contradictions, rich in events and colour. […] Lurching from one crisis to another, first financial, then about migrants and now the so-called health crisis, Greek citizens confront their difficulties and seize opportunities with extraordinary humanity, worthy of the beauty of their country’s rugged landscape.”
In the official selection, eight feature films were selected:
As Far as the Sea by Marco Gastine (108 min), produced by Les Films du Tambour de Soie and Minimal Films. This feature film is set in the Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Department of a large Athenian hospital, where serious casualties fight to return to an independent life.
– For No Reasons, Meetings With Giorgos Maniatis by Stavros Psillakis (98 min), produced by Stavros Psillakis. An interview with Yorgos Maniatis to understand the essence of his work and his being.
– Mataroa. The Journey Goes on… by Andreas Siadimas (84 min), produced by Dangerous Productions, and ERT. In December 1945, 150 young Greeks set out on a trip to Paris on a ship called Mataroa. Their escape from war-torn Greece is a traumatic experience which ultimately turns into creative expression.
– Romaniotes, the Greek Jews of Ioannina by Agnès Sklavos and Stelios Tatakis (67 min), produced by Tatakis AV Productions and Cosmote TV. This film looks at the history of the Romaniotes, the Greco-Jewish community of the city of Ioannina.
– Sugartown – For a Fistful of Votes by Kimon Tsakiris (73 min), produced by Bioptic. A feature film following the ousted mayor of Sugartown, who shows up again, determined to defeat his opponents once and for all.
– When the South Wind Blows by Kalliopi Legaki (93 min, 80 min), produced by Portolanos Films and ERT. A documentary about the Cyclades mobile mental health units.
– When Tomatoes Met Wagner by Marianna Economou (73 min, 52 min), produced by Anemon Productions and Stefi & Lynx Productions, is a bittersweet comedy – a modern story of rural revitalization, finding new ways of living together and exploring globalization on its own scale.
– Whispers of the Sky by Maro Anastopoulou (70 min), produced by Pangaia Pictures. Two inhabitants of the island of Amorgos, Captain Konstantis and Leonidas the Shepherd, read signs in the sky to help them decide the affairs of their daily life.
Three medium-length and three short films are also part of the official competition:
– Border Souls by Bardakos Takis (50 min), produced by Square Films: shows the absurdity of war and the tragedy of the refugees crossing the Aegean Sea on Greece’s northern border.
– Ovil and Usman by Dimitris Yeros (47 min), produced by Phyllo Editions. A testimony of a gay Muslim couple, Ovil and Usman.
– We Will Not Sell Our Future by Niki Velissaropoulou (53 min), produced by La Boîte à Songes, and France 3 Corse Via Stella. The film follows two teenage girls living in northern Greece whose lives are turned upside down when a project for an open-pit gold mine threatens their region.
– Arm Wrestler by Yorgos Goussis (22 min), produced by OH MY DOG! The portrait of a 30 year-old café owner and arm wrestler, alternating between his dreams and the reality of rural Greece.
– Pietà by Konstantinos-Antonios Goutos (8 min), produced by the Flâneu®: a stroll through the city of Athens just before the general elections.
– True Blue by Haris Raftogiannis (30 min), produced by Haris Raftogiannis, is a short film about an elderly Greek-American couple. As they enjoy life on the island of Ikaria, the sudden death of a neighbour reminds them that the end is inevitable.
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