Cinebanter

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Sunday, May 11, 2014

SIFF Sighting: STANDING ASIDE, WATCHING (Drama; Greece)

Modern-day Greece is struggling.

Amidst a game-changing financial crises, young citizens who are trying to make a life in larger cities are being forced to return home. This is the case for our main character, Antigone (Marina Symeou), who comes back to her depressed, coastal town to start over.

The pace is frustratingly slow as the film begins and we are introduced to the locals. What we soon learn is that this small community mirrors that of the American Wild West—violence and corruption dominate and everyone enduring it is either too tired or too scared to confront it.

Amidst abusive situations our heroine refuses to suppress her rage and accept that things will never change.

Having grown up in a male-dominated, Greek home, I both recognized the unbalanced strength and chauvinism of the men, and silently cheered as the strong women held their own.

It's not an uplifting look at what becomes of a society in ruin, but an honest one.

STANDING ASIDE, WATCHING will be shown at the 40th Seattle International Film Festival May 23 and 25. For tickets, go here.

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