To thávma tis thálassas ton Sargassón

The Miracle of the Sargasso Sea
Elisabeth is police chief of the Greek coastal town of Mesolongi. When she speaks, it sounds like angry barking. She drinks too much, constantly swears and is sleeping with a married doctor. Her transfer from Athens to this small fishing village ten years ago still rankles with her. Her adolescent son Dimitris is all too familiar with his mother’s moods. If she overdoes it after a shared dinner in a bar, he goes home. Rita comes from Mesolongi and works in a factory; her brother is something of a local celebrity. He sometimes makes her join him on stage during his club appearances. Rita is also deeply dissatisfied. But then a death tears apart the already fragile network of relationships between the villagers, revealing an even more damaged structure beneath.
Syllas Tzoumerkas’s third film portrays an extraordinary policewoman in the shape of Elisabeth. His protagonist is bulky, frustrated and ungracious. Angeliki Papoulia’s brilliant performance and the surprisingly shocking plot of To Thávma tis thálassas ton Sargassón (The Miracle of the Sargasso Sea) means we are served up a small-town nightmare garnished with eels and several layers of interpretation.
by Syllas Tzoumerkas
with Angeliki Papoulia, Youla Boudali, Christos Passalis, Argyris Xafis, Thanasis Dovris
Greece / Germany / Netherlands / Sweden 2019 Greek,  Subtitles: English 121’ Colour World premiere


  • Angeliki Papoulia (Elisabeth)
  • Youla Boudali (Rita)
  • Christos Passalis (Manolis)
  • Argyris Xafis (Vassilis)
  • Thanasis Dovris (Michalis)
  • Laertis Malkotsis (Andreas)
  • Maria Filini (Axel)
  • Michalis Kimonas (Vangelis)
  • Christian Culbida (Dimitris)
  • Michalis Mathioudakis (Mitsos)


DirectorSyllas Tzoumerkas
ScreenplayYoula Boudali, Syllas Tzoumerkas
CinematographyPetrus Sjövik
EditingAndreas Wodraschke
MusicJean-Paul Wall, drog_A_tek, Phoebus
Sound DesignMarco Vermaas
SoundFelix Siewert
Production DesignJorien Sont
CostumesMarli Aliferi
Make-upLinda Boije af Gennäs, Evi Zafiropoulou
ProducerMaria Drandaki
Executive ProducerSyllas Tzoumerkas
Associate ProducerMeinolf Zurhorst
Co-producersTitus Kreyenberg, Ellen Havenith, Olle Wirenhed, Anthony Muir
Co-productionunafilm, Köln
PRPL, Amsterdam
Kakadua Filmproduktion, Göteborg
Film I Väst, Trollhättan
ZDF/Arte, Mainz
ERT, Athen

Produced by

Homemade Films

Athen, Greece

+30 210 3238327

World sales

New Europe Film Sales

Warschau, Poland

+48 600 173205

Syllas Tzoumerkas

Born in Thessaloniki, Greece in 1978, he writes, directs and is an actor in film and theatre. His debut feature film, Homeland, premiered in the Venice Critics’ Week in 2010 and went on to screen at international film festivals. His second feature, A Blast, premiered at Locarno and was shown at over 80 festivals worldwide. He also co-wrote the scripts for Argyris Papadimitropoulos’ film Suntan (2016) and Ahmad Ghossein’s All This Victory (2019).


2010 Homeland 2014 A Blast

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2019


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