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The great twists in Wasted Youth

01 April 2011 / 16:04:14  GRReporter
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Lost dreams, lost opportunities, lost youth. A middle-aged man on the one hand, who is a public official, wants to open a pizza reasturant but does not dare because of the economic crisis. On the other hand, a 16-year-old skateboarder, who hangs aimlessly around Athens, finding nothing in common with the adults.

The film Wasted Youth by the young director Argiris Papadimitropoulos, which is on the Greek cinemas for two weeks now, makes you feel that you can not breathe in Athens in the summer. Claustrophobic, "mesmerizing" is the crisis’ impasse, the city makes you stay in one place, you can not move, which, in turn, pushes a silent tension. Will this tension break or will it crawl?

The story of the film keeps in suspense and has the sense of a time bomb, a realistic view of the director, but full of lyricism too. You not only recognize your Athenian neighbour in the nature of Yerionimos Kaletsanos, but you are speechless to the performance of the young Haris Markou and the boys from the company.
The filmmaker Argiris Papadimitropoulos catches the pulse of the Greek society today and with the help of Ian Vogel, made a successful film based on a several pages script, developed from the improvisations of the characters. The expectations are high after the Greek Dog Tooth is a candidate for an Oscar in the foreign language film category this year.

The film opened the 40th Festival in Rotterdam and was subsequently screened at many international festivals like the one in Guadalajara in Mexico, it will travel to Buenos Aires’ BAFICI in early April and will participate in the Karlovy Vary Film Festival in the Czech Republic.

"There are some films that are made with a sense of urgency. They belong to this type of films that must be made either now or never. Wasted Youth is certainly one of them. We had no specific plan when we decided to shoot the film. In fact, the script is only five pages, containing a story that we would use for the shooting. All we knew was that we want to work together and make a film that will tell this story NOW. The film is a portrait of a city that is on the verge of a nervous breakdown. At the same time, it is a film about the true scale of the burning youth, life and energy. This is the story of a young man who could be anyone, and who is doing what everyone is doing without knowing that they all can waste their lives in the future ..." says Argiris Papadimitropoulos.

"Youth is to be wasted, or what else to do with it, to save it? So, in the opinion of the film makers, there is no wasted youth. However, the "wasted youth" is what everyone thinks of the young people, because they are jealous of the young for the young are free, nice and fast. What the youth has is that it does not think about the danger, it has no fear, it takes risks, and ultimately does what it wants to do. All the others, we waste our lives because we do not follow what we like but what we "must". "Wasted", I am afraid, applies more to the elderly, not to the young," says the director.

The film is inspired by the events of December 2008 when a 16-year-old boy was shot dead by a police officer in Athens. The dialogues are improvised, there is no additional lighting during the shooting, but after its performance at the Festival in Rotterdam, a New York company engaged with the distribution of the film.

Tags: MediaCinemaWasted YouthFilmFestivalAthensScaters
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