There should be more good movies set in Greece. I think this every time I come here. Athens, Greece. In my head, and I am sure I am not the only one that does this, I live parts of my life like in a movie. A conversation would make great dialogue. A nice surprise would make a good twist. A wonderful view would be superb cinematography. You get the (motion) picture.
A tiny bit of background. I met my now wife in 2008, online. Facebook specifically. We both now live in the UK and have a two year old daughter. She lived in Athens, then, but eventually to be together, like together together, my long distance girlfriend had to make the ultimate sacrifice and leave her Greek life behind and come and live in England. Oh if only that was the other way around. One day. Not to say she has banished Greece into the darkness. Far from it. But anyway, that story, now in its seventh epic year, would be a great, great movie. In my head. And yours, I hope.
I know Captain Corelli’s Mandolin and For Your Eyes Only had Greek settings, but there are not many movies I can think of that capture the Greek landscape. By this I mean social landscape, like the food, the ancient stuff, the warm weather, the warm people. Oh, Zorba The Greek, that was pretty authentic. But that was decades ago. There was Mamma Mia! The movie title has the exclamation mark, I was not in any way excited about remembering that movie. Plus that does not really count. And there was, of course, My Big Fat Greek Wedding, although a little exaggerated perhaps, depicted the way the Greek people smother you and feed you. The stereotypes (and I’m not going to get into people’s ignorant views of Greece because of their economic struggles) are there, and relived through adverts or joke telling. I, myself, in the many times I have come to Greece, have not seen one plate being broken.
In the twelve or thirteen screenplays I have written / writing / read to draft none of them are set in Greece. I brag about the country and it’s many great things. I married a Greek. So I should be telling myself too – there should be more good movies set in Greece. A movie I have worked on for a long time, though not yet drafted, is about a Greek family in America. But they are estranged, and not particular warm with each other. So not a great example. More on that later. Maybe I should set a movie here, in Athens. And I hope the movie, and many others not written by me, makes you feel as warm as you do sitting on a balcony with that sun on your face. A movie that you watch and make you wish you were there. A movie that looks after you. Refreshes you like a frappe. Or tastes like Moussaka.