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Greek Cinema for Beginners

Greek Cinema for Beginners


Greek film studies have followed in the wake of the erratic history of Greek cinema. From 1900 through the finish of World War II, Greek cinema was, at best, a cottage industry, and at times it all but ceased to exist. The first Greek-language sound films were manufactured in the United States, and through the 1930s, most Greek movies needed final production done in other nations, often Egypt. Film commentary in this period was primarily restricted to tabloids. At the outcome of World War II, Greece entered into the fertile studio period by which some two thousand films were made over two decades. Film criticism was again mainly restricted to the favorite press. Following the fall of the Greek junta in 1974, Greece entered a new period of filmmaking. State funding was established, and scholarly works started initially to appear. Although the rising tide of Greek film studies has remained spotty in many ways, its discourse increasingly parallels other nations.

Historical Background

Greek cinema may be split into three significant periods: 1900–1942, 1942–1974, and 1974. During the first period, Greek film production was anemic and almost stumbled on a complete halt through the Metaxas dictatorship of 1936–1941. The period that followed was the most prolific and popular era of Greek cinema, with a studio system similar to that of Hollywood. That system, which produced some two hundred films annually, waned in the late 1960s, and following the fall of the dictatorship of 1967–1974, a new futurist cinema emerged. During the very first period, the most critical persons in filmmaking were directors and comedy stars. In the studio system, stars, especially musical stars, were as crucial as directors. There was also a powerful musical element in many better films and musicals and romantic comedies. Since the director became paramount following the junta’s fall, a period by which ten to twenty features appeared annually, the centrality of stars—which was a characteristic shared by both earlier periods—declined. However, music designed for film continued to have importance, not on the scale noticed in the studio period.

Until recently, an industry within a film that has gotten the short end of the stick slightly is that of the Greek film industry. What may have been as pivotal as Russian, French, or American cinema from the beginning of the medium, Greece’s film industry has continuously been hampered by politics, including cutbacks due to both World Wars (amongst other significant events). 1 of 2 essential outcomes occurred due to this stunting of growth: filmmakers work internationally (some of whom will undoubtedly be seen below), or the neighborhood cinema became rebellious. Considering that Greek cinema is more significant than it has been around years, it’s never too early or too late to celebrate. Listed here are ten of the greatest Greek films of all time.

Hercules (1958 movie)


The Italians were interested in the cinematic depictions of supernatural beings, heroes, and Greek mythology! In 1958, in “Le factice di Ercole” (The Labors of Hercules), directed by Pietro Franziski, bodybuilder Steve Reeves incarnated a Hercules who demolishes temples and falls in deep love with the beautiful princess Iole during a delectable Argonaut campaign! The movie is situated more on the myth of Jason and the Argonauts than the Labors of Hercules but has the Greek demi-god in the leading role. Many confusing myths together; nevertheless, the more famous heroes, the more popular the movie will undoubtedly be, right? Next season, in 1959, a sequel to this movie would follow with Steve Reeves staring again as Hercules, named Hercules Unchained (original title: “Ercole e la Regina di Lidia”).

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