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A Direction for Thrush by Antonis Tolakis at the 25th Thessaloniki Documentary Festival

2 March 2023

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Thessaloniki

The documentary film A Direction for Thrush directed by Antonis Tolakis, realised with the support of The J. F. Costopoulos Foundation, was screened in a world premiere at the official programme of the 25th Thessaloniki International Documentary Festival in the Open Horizons section.

The documentary explores the cinematic elements of the poem Thrush, Giorgos Seferis’ references to the art of cinema, as presented in his diaries and in his essays, ultimately highlighting the poet’s ambivalent attitude towards cinema.

On 27 December 1949, Giorgos Seferis writes a letter to his friend Giorgos Katsimbalis titled “A Direction for Thrush”. His anxiety that his poetic work’s expression be perceived is channeled through a scenario decoding the poem “Thrush”, considered inaccessible until then by the critics. Seferis breaks an inviolable rule, to explain one of his poems. “With the enthousiasm that one feels writing to a friend”, he creates a scenario for his poem, suggesting that “it is not unlikely that “Thrush” could be transferred to cinema one day”. But how can cinema really compete with poetry?

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