×

Slaughter of the Cock

Produced, directed by Andreas Pantzis. Screenplay, Pantzis, Dimitris Nollas. Camera (color), Nikolay Lazarov; editors, Araksi Mouhibian, Eugenia Tasseva, Klaudia Kambourova; music, Vassos Argyrides; art direction, Ivan Andreev; costume design, Metella Raboni; sound (Dolby SR Digital), Lioudmilla Mahalnishka; associate producer, Veneta Gencheva. Reviewed at Locarno Film Festival (competing), Switzerland, Aug. 12, 1996. Running time: 146 MIN.

Produced, directed by Andreas Pantzis. Screenplay, Pantzis, Dimitris Nollas. Camera (color), Nikolay Lazarov; editors, Araksi Mouhibian, Eugenia Tasseva, Klaudia Kambourova; music, Vassos Argyrides; art direction, Ivan Andreev; costume design, Metella Raboni; sound (Dolby SR Digital), Lioudmilla Mahalnishka; associate producer, Veneta Gencheva. Reviewed at Locarno Film Festival (competing), Switzerland, Aug. 12, 1996. Running time: 146 MIN.

With: Matthias Habich, Popi Avraam, Imma Piro, Gerassimos Skiadaressis.

(Greek, English and Ancient Greek dialogue)

Slaughter of the Cock” is lengthy proof that you can fool a lot of people most of the time. Six years in the making, with coin from at least as many countries plus a host of Euro film funds, this pretentious meditation on life, love and “communication” plays like the worst bits of Greek-lingo art movies all stitched together. Cyprus-based director Andreas Pantzis’ second feature looks set for a quick death beyond indulgent fests.

Greek Cypriot friends Evagoras (Georges Corraface) and Onisilos (Dimitris Velios) run a successful nightclub doubling as a prostitution venue. One day, a reel of 16mm film arrives in the mail detailing offbeat sexual practices the two engaged in when they were migrant workers in the Persian Gulf. Enter a cigar-chomping Yank, Eustace Achilles (Seymour Cassel), sender of the film and their former Gulf employer and sexual playmate. Achilles has come to stiff them out of a major chunk of the club.

The happily married Evagoras goes off the rails, and falls for a beautiful runaway mute (Valeria Golino) he meets one day in the countryside. When her brother trashes the nightclub and hauls her back home, the smitten Evagoras mutilates his own ears and mouth and sets off after her, to a certain death.

Aside from squandering a respectable cast on material that mostly requires only posturing, the movie consistently fails to establish any kind of thoroughgoing tone, veering from slow, arty sequences through semi-fantasy to commercial lyricism. For a film supposedly about communication, Pantzis communicates precious little over almost 2 hours. Sole standout is Nikolay Lazarov’s top-notch lensing.

Slaughter of the Cock

(I SFAGI TOU KOKORA)

  • Production: (CYPRIOTGREEKITALIAN) A Stephania Film Prods. presentation of a Greek Film Centre, Kourion Films, Pyramid Intl. (Greece)/Stephania Film Prods., Cyprus Film Board, Lumiere Services (Cyprus)/Nutrimenti Terrestri (Italy) production, in association with Ishkov Films, GVS Movies (Bulgaria) and Maram for Cinema & TV (Syria), with participation of Triangelfilms (Sweden) and Mallan Film (Germany). (International sales: Greek Film Centre, Athens.)
  • Crew:
  • With:
  • Music By: