Films of Truce mull children caught in conflict

The competition by Media Desk Hellas – a department of the Ministry of Culture – for a digital film based on the theme of the Olympic Truce, has come to an end and the winners were announced at the recent short-film festival in Athens’s Trianon cinema. The jury were looking for an original approach to the theme as well as masterful handling of digital technology from the production to the execution phase. Thus the first prize, carrying a 3,000-euro purse, was awarded to Stella Kavadatou’s film «Jasmin,» which looks at the Olympic Games of Berlin in 1936 – held under Hitler on the eve of the World War II – and Munich in 1972, when six days before the end of the Games, Arab commandos attacked the Olympic Village, initially killing two Israeli athletes and seizing another nine as hostages, who were subsequently killed during a confrontation between the terrorists and West German police. The historic events of these two Games are juxtaposed with the present crisis in the Middle East. The main character of her narrative is seven-year-old Jasmin, who has been donated a kidney by a 10-year-old Jewish student that died in a Palestinian suicide bomber attack. The jury awarded the prize to «Jasmin,» for «its artistic merit, its cinematic qualities and historical perspective, and its subtle handling of the issue.» The second prize of 1,500 euros was spilt equally between Maria Leonida’s «Some Children Know…» and Panayiotis Karamitsos’s «Unarmed Struggle.» In the first film, Leonida records children as they offer their view of the Olympics, showing the contrast between children who live in peace and those at war, while Karamitsos, to the rhythm of a runner’s breathing, shows flash shots of war and warring children.

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