By Vrasidas Karalis
The historical past of Greek cinema is a slightly vague and unexamined affair. Greek cinema begun slowly after which collapsed; for numerous years it struggled to reinvent itself, produced its first mature works, then collapsed thoroughly and nearly vanished. due to this sort of advanced historic trajectory no finished survey of the advance of Greek cinema has been written in English. This e-book is the 1st to discover its improvement and the contexts that outlined it via concentrating on its major motion pictures, personalities and theoretical discussions.
A background of Greek Cinema makes a speciality of the early many years and the makes an attempt to set up a "national" cinema helpful to social solidarity and nationwide identification. It additionally analyses the issues and the dilemmas that many Greek administrators confronted with the intention to determine a unique Greek cinema language and provides a few of the phases of improvement during the historical past of the turbulent political historical past of the rustic. The ebook combines old research and discussions approximately cinematic shape in to build a story heritage approximately Greek cinematic successes and screw ups.
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Extra info for A History of Greek Cinema
23 The quest for “authentic Greek images” was also becoming prevalent with the literary generation of the 1930s as a cultural project of self-reinvention after the Asia Minor Catastrophe. In many ways, such a quest was in its essence a defense mechanism to counterbalance the traumas of the previous decade through an anxious attempt to discover what had remained unscathed by the national disaster. Such a quest, which can be seen in all movies produced by Gaziadis, naturally led to Josef Hepp’s first attempts to introduce sound to filmmaking, since the authenticity of Greek images could only be emphasized by the use of the Greek language.
At the same time, Gaziadis constructed a gendered discourse for the nation, representing women as the most solid and steadfast core of moral probity, endurance, and stability. On this film, Gaziadis collaborated with Pavlos Nirvanas (1886–1937), one of the most well-known public intellectuals and popular writers of the period. Nirvanas wrote the scripts for both Astero and The Storm. . Among so many concessions and compromises, I also had to deal with an art that follows convention, and my constant concern from the beginning till the end was: how the characters in the cine-drama were to be Greek, to feel Greek, to behave Greek, to speak Greek, even to fall in love—the great barrier of the screen—in a Greek way.
This slowness was deliberate, a means of concealing gaps in the script or disguising the extreme theatricality of the actors. The scenes followed the pattern of still photographs; they simply moved in succession since the actors remained still in front of a fixed camera. Furthermore, the actors were crammed together in the very confined space of a small studio, thus restricting their movement and making their performances self-conscious. Yet some spectacular shots by Gaziadis, especially of a storm around a lighthouse, were commended strongly by critics and were subsequently imitated by other cinematographers.
A History of Greek Cinema by Vrasidas Karalis