Ifigeneia (Iphigenia) Reviews
This film and the story it narrates offer considerable insight into the lost world of ancient Greek thought that was the crucible for so much of our modern civilization. It teaches us much about ourselves as individuals and as social and political creatures. Euripides questions the value of war and patriotism when measured against the simple virtues of family and love, and reflects on woman's vulnerable position in a world of manly violence. In his adaptation of Euripides' tragedy, Kakoyannis revisits all of these themes with a modern, clear, and dramatic fashion.
And the big question: Is it a sacrifice or a murder, and how can we tell the difference between the two? By focusing on the violent and primitive horror of a human sacrifice--and, worst of all, the sacrifice of one's own child - Euripides/Kakoyannis creates a drama that is at once deeply political and agonizingly personal. It touches on a most complex and delicate ethical problem facing any society: the dire conflict between the needs of the individual versus those of the society. In the case of Iphigenia, however, as in the Biblical tale of Abraham and Isaac, the father is asked to kill his own child, by his own hand. What sort of God would insist on such payment? Can it be just or moral, even if divinely inspired? Finally, does the daughter's sacrificial death differ from the deaths of all the sons and daughters who are being sent to war? These are many deep questions raised by a two-hour film.
The ones that know at least squat about movie appreciation do not give a flying f#ck about that.