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Movies > Brides, a film from Greece May 25, 2006

Posted by grhomeboy in Movies Life Greek.

Seven hundred mail order brides, most of them from Greece, are being shipped to America. Most of them haven’t seen their prospective husbands except in a picture. Most are making the transatlantic journey to escape poverty, war and natural calamities.

Set in 1922, this movie directed by Partelis Voulgaris, explores the hopes and dreams of these young women. Voulgaris focuses on one woman from a small poverty stricken Greek island.

Niki Douka, 25, and her five sisters are single with no prospects of becoming married. All the young men who would have married the Douka sisters have been drafted into the army to fight Turkey. There isn’t much in terms of jobs on the island and the future looks bleak. Then an opportunity presents itself for Niki to travel to America as a replacement bride for Padromos, a Greek immigrant living in Chicago. Earlier, Padromos had been married to one of Niki’s sisters. But after living in America for a while, the sister found life too complicated. She fled to Greece, leaving Padromos wifeless and her family pride and honour in tatters.

To restore the family honour, Niki is chosen to replace her. Together with several girls from Georgia, Russia and Greece, she gets on a ship to travel to America. On the ship, the film explores the fears, nostalgia and hopes of the girls. But the journey isn’t so smooth, with an unscrupulous man on board who forces some of the girls into the sex trade. Then enter Norman Harris, a disappointed American photographer making the journey home. He falls in love with Niki. Shocked, Niki replies, “Don’t love me, I am Greek!” But inspite of herself, she develops feelings for Harris. But will Niki dump Padromos, a man she barely knew, for a foreigner who seems to understand her better than anyone else? This is an incredible story of love in a time of despair.

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