4 August 2009 | simon-bensasson
A view of a nascent but divided bourgeois society
I saw this film in 1966 at the Thessaloniki film festival so my memory of it may have faded a little but the fact that I still remember vividly the sharp and subtle humour and the satisfying mixture of political and social commentary and comedy says something about it. The backdrop of the film is the political unrest that followed the violation of the constitution by the then King and before the coup-d'etat of the colonels. This backdrop, however, is discreetly there in the background when the sound of demonstrations is heard in the salons of high society (a daily event then). The nouveau-riche character of Athenian high society (climbing the Acropolis at dawn to admire a view of the Hilton) is so real and it hasn't changed much. Some jokes are esoteric and would be lost today - for example the shipowner who drops a pocketful of coins on the couch (all but one of which are golden sovereigns): He keeps the sovereigns and gives the solitary drachma to the poor teacher of English sitting next to him saying "this drachma is yours". Nothing much but "this drachma is yours" was the slogan of the conservatives against the centre union party which the King had recently deposed.