"A festival is something personal. Each one of us lives his own festival”
- Yorgos Krassakopoulos, Head of Programming
Art can provide a balm for the modern soul, or so Monet would have us think. But in Thessaloniki it is difficult to forget that one is in Greece. Local protests against capitalism are a daily occurrence; it is a country from which 400,000 people have emigrated, most of whom won't return. A generation has been decimated, as if by war.
The obituary of art-house cinema is also said to have been written by capitalism— the proliferation of technology spurned a revolution in filmmaking ease, attended by a migration toward quantity rather than quality by studios and consumers alike.
The 57th annual Thessaloniki International Film Festival, however, has a vibe of willful ignorance, celebrating what the industry seems intent on leaving behind: this year's tribute belonged to avant-garde French filmmaker Philippe Grandrieux, for example. A host of Greek features alongside encore showings from Sundance, Berlin, Cannes, Sarajevo, and Venice populated this year's slate at Greece's most prestigious film festival.
Filmatique's top films of Thessaloniki, below:
A Decent Woman, Lukas Valenta Rinner
Aloys, Tobias Nolle
The Boy on the Bridge, Petros Charalambous
The Death of Louis XIV, Albert Serra
The Dreamed Ones, Ruth Beckermann
The Eremites, Ronny Trocker
Harmonium, Koji Fukada
Heartstone, Gudmundur Arnar
Mimosas, Oliver Laxe
Paterson, Jim Jarmusch
Saint George, Marco Martins
The Salesman, Asghar Farhadi
Sand Storm, Elite Zexer
Two Lovers and a Bear, Kim Nguyen
Interview by Dr. Loreta Gandolfi
Affiliated Lecturer in Film
University of Cambridge
Guest Curator, Filmatique