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Byzanfest 2021 Film Screenings

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 5, SCHEDULE

Short Films, Free with admission

Established in 2014, Byzanfest is an international film festival totally dedicated to Orthodox Christian cinema. The aim is simple: stream and screen the very best Orthodox stories with the world. Byzanfest strived to create something new and innovative, not be limited by the physical constraints of traditional venue-based festivals. Byzanfest looked ahead towards the future of entertainment and wanted to engage globally with both Orthodox and non-Orthodox audiences.

The Festival showcases films that reflect Orthodox Christian themes, beliefs, culture, and values. However, an entry’s storyline does not necessarily have to be ‘religious’. Although the film may not appear to have ‘Orthodox’ subject matter, it can still be deemed Orthodox because it was created by an Orthodox Christian filmmaker who maintained an Orthodox phronema (‘mindset’) during the creative process, remaining faithful to their Christian sense of dignity, morality, and self-respect.

The name ‘Byzanfest’ is in honor of the great Byzantine Empire, a place of great wisdom, art & Faith. Although it may no longer exist, the spirit and values of Byzantium shine out in the works of Orthodox Christians in the Digital Era.

12:00pm – LAST CHANCE
Even when in darkness everyone gets another chance.
Nominated: BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY (SHORT-FILM) and BEST SCREENPLAY (SHORT-FILM)
Genre: Dystopian Sci-Fi
Country: Romania
Director: Andrei Budau
Duration: 4min 56sec
Rating: contains mature themes. Parental guidance recommended.

12:30pm – ANATHEMA
On the island of Cyprus, an insomniac is haunted by hallucinations that his mother believes are a message from his dead father.
Nominated: BEST SHORT-FILM, BEST DIRECTOR (SHORT-FILM), BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY (SHORT-FILM) and BEST SCREENPLAY (SHORT-FILM)
Genre: Thriller
Country: Cyprus
Director: Paolo Antypas
Duration: 14min 26sec
Rating: contains scenes which may frighten young children. Parental guidance recommended.

1:00pm – DYSTOPIC VIRTUES
In a not-too-distant future where sharing is a crime.
Nominated: BEST SCREENPLAY (SHORT-FILM) and BEST YOUTH FILM
Genre: Dystopian Sci-Fi
Country: Australia
Director: St. Euphemia College
Duration: 3min
Rating: general viewing

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 5:

THE UN-LOST HOMELAND
1:00-3:30pm, Tickets $8 + admission. Pay at the door

“The UnLost Homeland” follows the story of 12 Greeks from Constantinople who lived through the Istanbul pogrom of 1955 in Turkey. It is notorious in modern history as the only pogrom of such magnitude to have taken place during peacetime. The camera lens together with the presenter transport us to the stories of all the refugees who were forced to leave their country as well as of one Turk who is in self-exile. These are the stories of everyday people who were brutally uprooted.
How did Turkey manage to eradicate all these minorities? What truly happened in these genocides that have been so masterfully silenced? Who were the Greeks of Istanbul really? How did they continue the Byzantine legacy? How did they manage to keep intact their language, their religion and their identity for 500 years after the fall of Constantinople? What was their education, their relationship with the Ecumenical Patriarchate, their everyday life, their cuisine? The story of this elite society unfolds through these rare interviews.
Nominated: BEST FILM, BEST DIRECTOR, BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY and BEST DOCUMENTARY
Genre: Documentary
Country: Greece
Director: Eftychia Fragou
Duration: 2hr 11min
Rating: general viewing