Greece— and Europe’s— current refugee and immigrant crisis is the theme of the film selected by the Greek Film Center to represent Greece at the 90th Academy Awards that will be held on March 4, 2018.
The film “Amerika Square,” by Yiannis Sakaridis tells the story of the intersecting fates of three people living in an Athens housing complex: a local, aging hipster bar owner who falls in love with an African singer; a Syrian refugee who turns to a human trafficker in order to emigrate to Germany; and an unstable, xenophobic nationalist who takes matters into his own hands to stop the influx of migrants.
The stories come together in the end in a masterful way, which led The Hollywood Reporter to call the film “one of the best European films to date on the subject of immigration in all its painful implications.”
“Amerika Square” takes its name from the well-known square in central Athens, now a mecca for foreigners and refugees from all corners of the earth and although numerous similar neighborhoods and city squares exist in the city, Sakaridis knew the power of the metaphor in naming his film and weaving a story of emigration and opportunity— for some.
All in all, more than ninety nations submitted official films to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Of these, five will be announced as official nominees in early 2018.
Greece has a long history of submitting films to the Oscars and has been nominated five times — most recently in 2010 for Yorgos Lanthimos’ Dogtooth — but has never won the coveted statuette in the Best Foreign Language Film category.
Watch the trailer of Amerika Square:
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