May induce a midlife crisis
SUNTAN Directed by Argyris Papadimitropoulos. Starring: Makis Papadimitriou, Elli Tringou, Milou Van Groessen, Dimi Hart, Hara Kotsali, Marcus Collen, Yannis Tsortekis Club, limited release, 104 min If you felt uncomfortable watching Makis Papadimitriou lip-synch to Minnie Riperton’s Lovin’ You in Athina Rachel Tsangari’s Chevalier, you ain’t seen nothing yet.
The same actor returns as Kostis, the sad-sack, fortysomething doctor at the centre of this blisteringly caustic dramedy.
Having taken a post on the Cycladic Greek island of Antiparos – population 800 – he keeps to himself, until summer brings armies of nubile party animals and hedonists to the local nudist beaches. One day, a group of good-looking, loud-mouthed free spirits – led by Anna (Elli Tringou) – descend on the physician’s clinic.
Later, a smitten Kostis spends the evening wandering around the island’s many hotspots until he finds Anna and her boisterous pals. She coos, pronouncing him the “best doctor in the world”, and allows him to hang around the edges of the group’s omnisexual binge-drinking escapades. And so, pasty-white, wobbly body notwithstanding, he follows them to the beach the next day. And the next day.
What follows makes for excruciating viewing, as the increasingly unhinged protago-
nist risks his career to be both an unwanted party-crasher, and a middle-aged man who apparently doesn’t know the meaning of the phrase “age-appropriate”.
Writer-director Argyris Papadimitropoulos milks this scenario for maximum audience squirm, as the filmmaker body-shames, age-shames and cool-shames the unfortunate physician, while the beautiful people play and bronze their perky, perfectly formed bits in the sun.
Thus, Christos Karamanis’s widescreen, azure lensing only serves to enforce the body fascism. Have you started your summer bikini diet yet? No wonder things eventually turn nasty. See it, frorm between your fingers. But only if you’re not in the throes of a midlife crisis.