A GOODNIGHT TO YOU, MR. ALEXANDER
Format: Colour, 16mm, 60 mins.
Director: Iannis Smaragdis
Producers: Iannis Smaragdis, George Arvanitis, George Triantafyllou
Script: Iannis Smaragdis
Music: Eleni Karaindrou
Cinematography: George Arvanitis
Editing: George Triantafyllou
Sets and costumes: Nikos Politis
Cast: Vassilis Diamantopoulos, Mimis Chryssomalis, Olga Tournaki, Tania Savopoulou
Production date: 1980
Iannis Smaragdis' Good Night to You, Mister Alexander is a cinematic tribute to the author Alexandros Papadiamantis, created in 1980. It was the first film ever made for television by the Greek State TV (ET1).
When it was shown on ET1, it received highly complimentary reviews. Wherever it has been screened abroad - France, the UK, the USA and elsewhere - it was heart-warmingly received.
This is a unique film, the outcome of astonishing work on every level: the directing, the script, the photography, the music, the montage, the acting, the sets and the costumes. The narrative unfolds at an ideal pace, captivating the eye and introducing us in an almost ritual manner to the magical landscapes of Skiathos, where the great author lived and was inspired. The script is full of passion and conviction about the man and his work, a fascinating exploration of his inner world and of the cosmos he created in his stories.
G. Notaras, Kathimerini, 22 March 1997
Smaragdis has seized the bull of convention by the horns. Rather than doing what is so often the practice and playing a questionable hide-and-seek with it, he strips it bare, making the transition from the actor Diamantopoulos to the central character Papadiamantis in the most natural way, as if he were saying honestly, "We do not claim to be making a biopic and we are not reconstructing anything; all we are doing is trying, in the present, to recapture some notes from the music of the past".
Telivolos Epikaira, 2 April 1981
Perhaps we have never before seen a Greek film with such integration in the articulation of time and space
Makis Moraitis, Texts on the Cinema, Thavmatropio, Athens 1981, pp.168-172.