From the Snow

Sotiris Goritsas is a dynamic filmmaker whose work stands out amongst the new wave of Greek cinema that emerged in the last decade. From the Snow is a drama about Greek migration in the early 1990s. Considered Greek by Albanian authorities and Albanian by Greeks, refugees from the Greek-minority region of Northern Epirus were initially given virtual carte blanche to enter Greece as cheap labour until the government began efforts to stem the influx. Clandestine immigration continued, however, creating a flourishing climate for worker exploitation, police harassment, homelessness and the sale of refugee children for adoption. Goritsas incorporates this background into the story of two Epirot men and a recently orphaned boy who flee first to Corfu and then to Athens. Their dreams of socialism’s opportunities quickly dissolve as they endure a hopeless bout of adversity that eventually sends them back to Albania. ‘The subject of forced exile, the subject of the ‘foreigner’, is closely tied to modern Greek history,’ Goritsas has said. ‘Now we have found ourselves on the other side, not with the ‘foreigner’ but as the host to the ‘foreigner’. And it appears that we’ve quickly forgotten our previous life, our past suffering, our identity.’ It’s a theme that should strike a chord with Irish audiences.
(1993. English subtitles. Colour. Dolby stereo SR. 90 mins.)

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