Archive of films Hard Goodbyes: My Father / Diskoli apocheretismi: O babas mou

2002, 108 min

Section: Another View
Year: 2003

Ten-year-old Elias, who lives in Athens with his family at the end of the sixties, experiences the toughest moments of his life. His father has died unexpectedly and the boy cannot cope with the loss. Coming to terms with reality is so very hard and painful. 


Set in Athens at the end of the sixties, the film deals with ten-year-old Elias and his attempts to cope with the tragic death of his father. His brother, mother and other members of the family face this unexpected blow each in his or her own way, but the boy is unable to accept the painful reality. He refuses to come to terms with the fact that he’ll never see his father again and clings to the promise that, after his father returns, they’ll watch the American moon landing together. The burdensome situation marks the boys behaviour. Elias lies, quarrels with friends at school, runs away from home and writes letters to his grandmother as though they are from his father. When the moon landing is broadcast, Elias finally takes the first step towards saying goodbye. The anger he has stored up is replaced with understanding and the boy stops waiting for something which will never return.

About the director

Penny Panayotopoulou (b. Athens) graduated in law from the University of Athens and in direction from Stavrakos Film School. In 1982-85 she lived in London where she studied photography and direction at the University of Westminster. In 1986 she began working for television and shot several social and psychoanalytical shorts and cultural programs. Eldorado (1988) won several awards, including Best Short Fiction from the Thessaloniki IFF. Hard Goodbyes: My Father is the director’s feature debut. Selected filmography: Zig-Zag (1981), The Trial (1983), And If You Hear from My Louise (1984), Like Rain, Like Hail (1996).


Greek Film Centre
7 Dionissiou Areopagitou, 117 42, Athens
Tel: +30 210 367 850 0
Fax: +30 210 3648269

About the film

Color, 35 mm

Section: Another View
Director: Penny Panayotopoulou
Screenplay: Penny Panayotopoulou
Dir. of Photography: Dimitris Katsaitis
Music: Stavros Sofianopoulos
Editor: Petar Markovic, Angelos Angelopoulos
Producer: Costas Lambropoulos, Thanos Karathanos, George Louizos
Production: Greek Film Centre
Cast: Yorgos Karayannis, Stelios Mainas, Ioanna Tsirigouli, Christos Stergioglou, Christos Bougiotas, Despo Diamantidou
Contact: Greek Film Centre


Kanasis Karatanos


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