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THE AEGEAN TRAGEDY

Greece, 1962 (MIFF 1963)

Director: Basil N. Maros

For many years prior to the Second World War, the Balkans was a hotbed of intrigue, revolution and counter-revolution. The sudden deaths of eminent statesmen were commonplace and dictatorships succeeded governments with bewildering rapidity. In the centre of all this intrigue, and sometimes actively invovled, stood Greece.

This fascinating film, made up entirely of excerpts from old newsreels - some of which appear to be captured German film - traces Greek history from the 1914 era of King Constantine, through the Turkish struggle, through rebellion and several types of government to the end of the Second World War and the final defeat of the E.L.A.S. forces. Across the screen flash many well-known faces from the past and present, and from the tangled web of Greece's recent history is made plain and the march of events becomes tragically clear.

Some of the film's most effective moments are shots of refugees moving into Piraeus from Asia Minor, the chilling demonstrations by Greek children under military dictatorship, and the 'scorched earth' policy of the retreating Germans. But throughout is depicted an obvious affection for his countrymen by the director who has made an important film document.

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