Antigone returns from Athens to her troubled hometown, determined to keep a low profile. But this is a complex, difficult woman — her name is no coincidence — and her run-ins with the town's brutish men set a dramatic series of events in motion. A moral drama with an edge.
Standing Aside, Watching
Antigone — the name can't be coincidental — returns from Athens to her hometown, seeking to build herself a new, quiet life. The setting between mountains and shoreline is beautiful, but it is a place now defined by its scrap-metal industry and brutish men.
Standing Aside, Watching tells the story of a woman forced by circumstance to confront the place that made her. Having left behind her life as a failed actor, Antigone, now in her thirties, takes a job as an English teacher. She reconnects with old friends and neighbours who never left the town, and even finds a younger boyfriend. But as the community's undercurrents of intolerance and violence begin to boil over, Antigone's determination to return to her roots and quietly reassimilate is shaken — until it becomes increasingly difficult to stay out of other peoples' business.
Using Sophocles's heroine — an eternal
emblem of female rebellion — as a starting
point, writer-director Yorgos Servetas
blends a gritty character study with elements
of the traditional western to craft
a statement on the self-perpetuating
nature of small-town violence. Antigone
is a woman both at home and out of place,
shaped by the big city but drawn to the
starker loyalties of life in a communitywhere secrets are hard to keep. Played
with pointed perfection by Marina Symeou
(who also starred in Servetas's debut, The
Way Things are Determined), she is fascinating
and prickly, a force of nature coming
home to wreak havoc on the dismal status
quo — and hopefully build something new.