Drawing inspiration from a real-life murder, rural poverty and Greek mythology, Theo Angelopoulos’ masterful first feature offers a glimpse of the style and themes which would eventually define his career. Set in a village in the depopulated wastelands of northern Greece, Reconstruction revolves around the investigations into a murder everyone’s keen to frame as a simple crime of passion committed by the victim’s wife and her lover. But multiple flashbacks reveal a much murkier truth than the evidence suggests. Taking his cue from film noir but dialing things down by several notches, Angelopoulos depicts the incident as proof of Greece’s social decay and also the oppression of the conservative military junta ruling the country at the time. Bolstered by Giorgios Avanitis’ stunning black-and-white camerawork, Angelopoulos delivers perhaps one of the most striking debuts in Greek cinema – if not of the world.
Toula Stathopholou, Yannis Totsikas, Mihalis Fotopoulos