For many years, Nadja has worked as a housekeeper for an upper class Greek couple and their daughter. She’s allowed to feel like part of the family. When she’s diagnosed with a serious illness, and the man of the house runs into financial difficulties due to the economic crisis, Nadja loses her job. Yet she shows no external sign of how these two traumatic events have affected her. A film of dazzling light. The misery is not apparent in the images. It’s summer, the air shimmers, the sea sparkles. The view is breathtaking from the villa high above the Aegean Sea. Only gradually is the set-up revealed: clear distinctions exist between top and bottom, domestic and foreign, those with and those without health insurance. Yet for Nadja class is not even a question, just as she does not fight for her rights. She keeps a tight hold on her feelings, insisting not on her job but on her emotional ties. Stylised, yet with the real world in its sights, the film draws on elegant CinemaScope images and depictions of space to tell the story of a quiet heroine feeling the social chill in the style of a tender melodrama. No big close-ups, no big emotional outbursts, still great cinema.
by Athanasios Karanikolas
with Maria Kallimani, Marisha Triantafyllidou, Alexandros Logothetis, Zoi Asimaki, Giannis Tsortekis
Greece / Germany 2014