A maid from the sticks is lusted after by almost every member of a army major’s household in “The 7th Sun of Love,” a period drama notionally centered on class and sexual politics that’s undercut by lackluster direction and scripting. Centered, like veteran helmer Vangelis Serdaris’ previous “Vassiliki” (1997), on an abused but plucky young woman, “Sun” doesn’t look likely to shine far offshore.
Story is largely set in 1922, a watershed year in which Greece’s territorial aspirations in Turkey received a bloody, final setback. As Aglaia (Katerina Papadaki) is groped by the manservant (Hrysanthos Pavlou), the major (Thodoros Skourtas) and his wife (Maria Kavoukidou), but finally turns the tables on the whole rotten lot, the film draws parallels between their behavior and the last gasp of an arrogant, ruling elite. That’s fine, but the drama is unconvincing on a human level and fails to develop much atmosphere. Kavoukidou brings some style as the cool, sapphic-inclined wife and Papadaki is OK as the canny country girl. Period design and costumes are pro. Amazingly, pic won three prizes at Greece’s State Cinema Awards last November, including best direction and script.