Dir: Udayan Prasad.
Make no mistake, UdayanPrasad, director of such smart racial explorations as Brothers In Trouble or My SonThe Fanatic, seems to have taken a leave of absence with Opa!, a featherweight romp set in the Greek islands that squeezesthe life out of every Mediterranean recipe in the book.
It's a formula that has beendone countless times before - from Paul Mazursky'sversion of The Tempest to Mediterraneo and
The plot concerns anAmerican professor whom comes to
By the time this conflict issettled, one wavers between astonishment at seeing films such as Opa
Eric (Matthew Modine) is an archaeologist who doesn't have to dig inorder to know what's underground, for his laptop converses directly with thenearest satellite, providing him with every bit of information he needs.
He comes to
To find the cup, Eric has totear down Katerina's establishment, a difficult thingto ask for after skinny-dipping with her on a gorgeously secluded beach.Therefore it falls to the smooth-talking mayor (ChristosValavanidis), in charge of all the paperworkincluding Katerina's eviction order.
Professor Tierney (RichardGriffiths), a portly British scientist who has been on the island for years andexpects to go on living there for the rest of his days, looks disapprovingly atproceedings from a distance but does not interfere. He does not have to - forlove does not need anyone's assistance in this kind of film.
So what do we have here' Sun, sea and sand in abundance. Greatlandscapes. Greek music, folk dancing, lots of ouzo and fiery temperaments.Then there is the heroine who does not mind taking the initiative when the manis shy, a smart granny, and even a Greek chorus (or,who knows, maybe Macbeth's witches). It's rounded off by three old women inblack who start by commenting on Katerina's moralsand are soon quoting Robert Browning.
There is also love at firstsight, for the moment Katerina lays her eyes on Eric shealready knows he is the man for her. To spice it all up a bit, a touch ofpolitical corruption is thrown into the mix with a blundering Oklahoman who hasbeen flown in to take the taverna apart and hasplenty of fancy suggestions on the best way to do it.
Put it all together and onpaper at least it may look like a rich Greek salad - but even a salad needsfresh product to give it taste - and this is what
Modine's boyish charm of days gone by is a bit faded now andhe needs to grow into roles that are more attuned to his age. Agni Scott is all smiles and tantrums, which is about allthe role requires of her, while Richard Griffiths sails around the sets playingthe older statesman with the adequate aplomb and affected accent of a Britabroad.
It is all buoyed up by aGreek-inspired soundtrack and attractive shots of the scenery taken from themost advantageous angles.
Cinema Seven Productions
Magrytte Films International
Bristol Media International