Sunday August 31, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
31o C
24o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Ongoing crisis sets the frame for Greek filmmakers at TDF

'Kismet,' a film made by Nina Maria Paschalidou, explores the impact of Turkish soap operas across the Arab world and the Balkans.

By Harry van Versendaal

The controversial shutdown of Greece's state TV and radio broadcaster last year, the devastating implications of German-inspired austerity policies on Europe's southern periphery, the effect of Turkey's most significant cultural export: soap operas.

These are some of the issues at the focus of local filmmakers taking part in this year's Thessaloniki Documentary Festival (TDF) which gets under way on March 14 with 60 titles – feature as well as shorts – listed in the Greek program.

The thought-provoking lineup includes works dealing with a wide range of subjects such as the environment, history, migration and the arts – although a fair share of filmmakers naturally took an interest in the ongoing financial crisis which has trapped Greece in recession for more than six years.

A year after “Neo-Nazi: The Holocaust of Memory,” TV journalist and documentarist Stelios Kouloglou returns to the TDF with another timely project. This time he documents the social and economic repercussions of the ongoing malaise on Greece and other debt-wracked nations in the euro area. The 100-minute film, titled “The Godmother,” does so while presenting a portrait of one of the key characters in the European debt saga, Angela Merkel, detailing her rise from humble Protestant pastor's daughter to chancellor of European paymaster Germany. The title of the documentary is taken from veteran Christian Democrat Gertrud Hohler's book “The Godmother: How Angela Merkel Is Reconstructing Germany.”

Also related to the crisis is Yorgos Avgeropoulos's “Lost Signal of Democracy,” which chronicles the Greek government's decision in June 2013 to abruptly shut down the country's state broadcaster ERT after 75 years of continuous operation. The highly controversial move, which led to the defection of a junior socialist partner from the power-sharing administration, was portrayed by authorities as a bid to trim state spending as demanded by the terms of an international bailout as an allegedly smaller, cheaper corporation was set up in ERT's place.

ERT's shutdown did nothing to slow the invasion of Turkish soap operas, which have proved a major success in Greece as well as the Arab world. “Kismet,” by Nina Maria Paschalidou, examines the popularity of shows such as “Fatmagul” and “Suleiman” and their cultural impact on Islamic homes as they challenge social norms and taboos in the more hardline nations. Filmed in Turkey, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, Bulgaria and Greece, Paschalidou's documentary features interviews with the stars, directors, and scriptwriters coupled with experts' opinion and portraits of fans.

The TDF, now in its 16th year, runs until March 23.

www.filmfestival.gr

ekathimerini.com , Friday February 28, 2014 (17:41)  
The rebirth of one of Athenss 19th-century architectural treasures
Folk dancers from around the world perform at Syntagma Square
From crowdfunding to recipes for sharing
The fascinating journey of a cultural treasure
The story of a Kenyan womans escape from genital mutilation
Everyone who knows her speaks of a kind, low-key woman who only rarely shares her story. The 42-year-old Kenyan, who wished to remain anonymous, just barely escaped deportation from Greece b...
Persecuted by jihadists, Yazidis flee to Greece
They hate us because of our faith. The only thing they have asked of us is that we change religion not that we join their army or anything else, 26-year-old Jamal said when asked why the...
Inside Community
Inside Gastronomy
Inside Travel
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
RECENT NEWS
1. Traveling on public transport in Athens gets cheaper
2. Push made for cuts in education as merger scheme fails
3. Govt aims to curb measures, secure loans, allow tax relief
4. DIMAR chief Kouvelis hints about presidency
5. French expert says Crete crocodile in good health, aged 4-7
6. Tensions mar regional ity swearing-in ceremony
more news
Today
This Week
1. Keeping an eye on international developments
2. A few good men
3. Disappearing inflation heightens Draghi concerns
4. Two men drown off Crete coast in strong tides
5. Traveling on public transport in Athens gets cheaper
6. Push made for cuts in education as merger scheme fails
Today
This Week
1. Attack on gay couple in Athens leaves one man needing surgery
2. Purification rituals
3. The battle against progress
4. Thessaloniki mayor Boutaris sworn in wearing yellow star amid Golden Dawn protests
5. Strong undersea quake occurs off island of Milos, felt in Athens
6. Athens finalizes Paris talks goals
Find us ...
... on
Twitter
... on Facebook
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.