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The 10 Greek Comedy Films That You Must See!

Updated on May 23, 2017

The Prologue

There will not be a prologue... I just cannot make my choice! I can't select any! These films have introduced me the cinema itself! So I have to thank them and apologize to those which are not included in my list...

I oraia ton Athinon (1954)

I oraia ton Athinon was released in 1954. It's today one of the most famous Greek comedy films in Greece from this era. Its themes are pluralistic! The films is about love, poverty, neediness and exploitation. But still, in the end of the film you will be in a good mood!

Some scenes from this film are now considered as iconic (in Greece). Some quotes are now considered as iconic (in Greece), too. In the decade of 50s and especially the following one, the leading actors were super stars in Greek Cinema, like Mimis Fotopoulos, Nikos Stavridis, Vassilis Avlonitis and Georgia Vassiliadou.

The plot also is pretty wonderful. Two poor drifters accepted to be married to an ugly woman because of money but soon their honesty will triumph so they will marry those who love! It might be regarded as a comedy but it's not only this... It's a deeply touching film with many references to Greek ethics at the time.

Maybe some dialogues are too "Greeky" to be understood to foreigners... This is the only thing I am afraid of... But if there is will you are going to enjoy it! Its characters are all unique. Completely finest! Totally worth watching!

  • Genre: Comedy/Romantic
  • Directed by Nikos Tsiforos
  • Writeen by Nikos Tsiforos
  • Produced by Finos Film
  • Music by Giorgos Mouzakis
  • Starring: Mimis Fotopoulos, Nikos Stavridis, Vassilis Avlonitis and Georgia Vassiliadou

O ziliarogatos (1956)

O ziliarogatos was released in 1956. And it's the offspring of Yiorgos Tzavellas. This film was "doomed" to be successful! It was directed and written by Tzavellas (one of the best Greek directors) and starred by Vassilis Logothetidis (one of the best Greek comedian). We don't stop there: Manos Hadjidakis composed the music theme.

The plot is simple, wonderful and clever: The wife of an industrialist who doesn't care about her creates a plot with her cousin to make him jealous. The narration goes beautifully well! It was nothing happened at random.

I think it's the right film to start watching Greek comedy films. The main theme of the film is the "jealousy" and you would be able to understand that if you knew what the title means. However this is not the only topic. The director examines the love which was growing among the Greeks for the films at the time. These two mismatched topics were presented in this movie with a very smart way that finally made sense!

  • Genre: Comedy
  • Directed by Yiorgos Tzavellas
  • Written by Yiorgos Tzavellas
  • Produced by Anzervos
  • Music by Manos Hadjidakis
  • Starring: Vassilis Logothetidis, Ilia Livikou, Lambros Konstantaras, Vangelis Protopapas



The Policeman of the 16th Precinct (1959)

The Policeman of the 16th Precinct was released in 1959. It was directed by Alekos Sakellarios. This is a great piece of comedy. It has all the ingredients of a good comedy: remarkable characters, clever dialogues and a great plot.

Poverty and neediness are its main themes. Of course they were covered by humor! The screenplay was pretty simple: a heartless man saves his money inside of a boot. So, three friends try to steal it but the things don't go as they are planned.

  • Genre: Comedy
  • Directed by Alekos Sakellarios
  • Written by Alekos Sakellarios and Christos Giannakopoulos
  • Produced by Finos Film
  • Music by Takis Morakis
  • Starring: Costas Hadjihristos, Thanassis Vengos and Dionysis Papagiannopoulos

Makrykostaioi and Kondogiorgides (1960)

Makrykostaioi kai Kondogiorgides was released in 1960. It's lightly a comedy of errors but not in its classical form. It was directed by Alekos Sakellarios and produced by Finos Film Company. Its plot is about a "vendetta" between two families in a Greek village.

The title gives us the names of these families. From these families had no left other males except the two protagonists. But they don't know each other and they don't want to keep the killings. So they are afraid of each other! It's a hilarious comedy. The director is going to let you know from the beginning what's going on but our protagonists will find it out at the end...

Iliopoulos and Hadjihristos were at their best and their chemistry was obvious. Just try this one and let them introduce you in their funny and misunderstanding world. They journey will be fine! Trust me on this!

  • Genre: Comedy
  • Directed by Alekos Sakellarios
  • Written by Alekos Sakellarios and Christos Giannakopoulos
  • Produced by Finos Film
  • Music by Mimis Plessas
  • Starring: Dinos Iliopoulos and Costas Hadjihristos

One of the film's most famous scenes!
One of the film's most famous scenes!

Ta kitrina gantia (1960)

Ta kitrina gantia was released in 1960. The secret of happiness is simple: Finos Film Company & Alekos Sakellarios. This film is one of the Finos Film and Alekos Sakellarios' films that faced success in Greece. The leading actor, Nikos Stavridis, was perfect! He was so good in his role! He was also surrounded by a perfect cast and their roles! Most of them are now unforgettable.

The main theme of the film is the pathological jealousy. Of course, it's a pure comedy, in spite of its examination of some negative aspects of pathological jealousy. Our hero, Orestis, is jealous of his wife who's completely faithful to him. But he cannot see that! Some events led him to believe that his wife is unfaithful though.

Some of the film quotes are now iconic! They would look "dumb" today. But when something travels through decades then it becomes iconic, right? Please, don't judge an old movie as it is released today!

  • Genre: Comedy
  • Directed by Alekos Sakellarios
  • Written by Alekos Sakellarios and Christos Giannakopoulos
  • Produced by Finos Film
  • Music by Takis Morakis
  • Starring: Nikos Stavridis, Maro Kontou, Mimis Fotopoulos and Giannis Gionakis


Left: Vassilis Avlonitis and right: Gerogia Vassiliadou
Left: Vassilis Avlonitis and right: Gerogia Vassiliadou

O Klearhos, i Marina kai o kontos (1961)

O Klearhos, i Marina kai o kontos was released in 1961. This is one of the many comedy films that Finos Film Company produced. Its main theme is the unfaithfulness. Actually as they said its theme had offended the ethics and they didn't want it to be released. Eventually it did and we are grateful about it.

As it was said, the unfaithfulness is the film's main topic and the plot tells a story of an unfaithful husband who’s flirting with every woman he likes. But his wife doesn't suspect him. She suspects their son-in-law instead, who's innocent.

The film's got clever dialogues and funny characters. And everything would agree that the three leading actors were at their best! One thing for sure: when you see Avlonits' grimaces you will never forget them. His face, you'd think, was made by plastic. Undeniably it's one of the best Greek comedy films!

In 2015, a remake of the film was released. But it was a completely failure. It's not that easy to perform a role which was played by those actors. Some things cannot be remade... It's sometimes as simple as that...

  • Genre: Comedy
  • Directed by Nikos Tsiforos
  • Written by Nikos Tsiforos and Polyvios Vassiliadis
  • Produced by Finos Film
  • Music by Giorgos Mouzakis
  • Starring: Vassilis Avlonitis, Nikos Rizos and Georgia Vassiliadou

O atsidas (1962)

O atsidas was released in 1962. It was directed and written by Yiannis Dalianidis. This film examines another Greek society aspect: the arranged marriage. In this movie, young people resist and fall in love with their own "significant other".

This is not the only film's theme... Every foreign film is a sample of other countries' society and ethics. The plot is wonderful. And what I like more is that in the Greek films many actors could save a "bad" screenplay... Most of the times you don't care about it... You just enjoy the acting and the roles... However, this film's got it all!

There were many films in which the supporting role was received with great applause... So this is one of those films... But really, both the leading and the supporting actors were great!

  • Genre: Comedy
  • Directed by Yiannis Dalianidis
  • Written by Yiannis Dalianidis
  • Produced by Finos Film
  • Music by Manolis Chiotis and Gerasimos Lavranos
  • Starring: Dinos Iliopoulos, Zoi Laskari and Thanassis Vengos

For those who can't stand black and white films, it has lately been colorised...
For those who can't stand black and white films, it has lately been colorised...

Tis kakomoiras (1963)

Tis kakomoiras was released in 1963. It was directed and written by Dinos Katsouridis. This film is very important for Greek Comedy, because the whole screenplay comprised four or five pages. So whatever you see or listen is just an improvisation of Costas Hajihristos. That role is now considered as his best and the most famous of his total career.

Today the film became the most mainstream film of the old Greek cinema. This happened because of its clever quotes and its entertaining characters. In fact if I had to write the best quotes of the film then I would write the whole story. This is not something usual. So this is absolutely a Hajihristos' achievement.

I forgot to mention the plot but it doesn't really matter... It's really difficult to find the key words for the plot. There is not really a plot. But it doesn't bother us. We could watch this film endlessly. Every scene is a comedy sketch, who cares about continuation in sketches? No one... It is now believed that is the best Greek comedy film of all time.

  • Genre: Comedy
  • Directed by Dinos Katsouridis
  • Written by Dinos Katsouridis
  • Produced by Dinos Katsouridis and Costas Hajihristos
  • Music by Giorgos Mouzakis
  • Starring: Costas Hajihristos, Costas Doukas and Nikos Rizos

Polytehnitis kai erimospitis (1963)

Polytehnitis kai erimospitis was released in 1963. It was directed by Alekos Sakellarios. This film is similar to Tis kakomoiras pertaining to its form. There is no really a plot. The film comprised five sketches without a continuation. The main theme of the film is that a peasant comes to Athens to find a job.

Like the above film, if I had to present its quotes then I would present the whole story. It now became a famous film and is being shown on television regularly. It is quite a funny movie which can be watched over and over again.

The four from five parts/jobs of our hero are equally funny and amusing. The fifth is not that good as the previous ones. The four of them cannot be ranked better or worse than the others.

  • Genre: Comedy
  • Directed by Alekos Sakellarios
  • Written by Alekos Sakellarios and Christos Giannakopoulos
  • Produced by Karagiannis-Karatzopoulos
  • Starring: Thanassis Vengos

My Friend Lefterakis (1964)

My Friend Lefterakis was released in 1964. It was directed and written by Alekos Sakellarios. It's regarded as one of the best Greek comedy film. And I totally agree! It was produced by Finos Film Company and it's one of its best comedy films.

The plot is wonderful. And the dialogues are smart. Everything goes well in this film. The plot is about an unfaithful husband who lies to his wife about an imaginary friend who's named Lefterakis. This plan was made because he wanted to meet his mistress. But his wife will be told about it and she will plan her cunning plan by presenting him his imaginary friend Lefterakis!

This film is totally recommended! It would be a very pleasant 90-minute time. It doesn't have many "Greeky" jokes so you will watch it easily. It's also guaranteed that some scenes will make you burst into laughter! Its characters are also well-made, I think, no one created randomly... It's worth watching!

  • Genre: Comedy
  • Directed by Alekos Sakellarios
  • Written by Alekos Sakellarios
  • Produced by Finos Film
  • Music by Gerasimos Lavranos
  • Starring: Dinos Iliopoulos, Maro Kontou and Costas Voutsas

Notes!

Some of the titles were written in greeklish. I found them on IMDb and on Wikipedia. There is no an international title for all of them. But I will write them down for you in free translation:

Greeklish
Free translation
Notes
I oraia ton Athinon
The Beauty of Athens
-
O ziliarogatos
A Jealousy Man
It isn't easy to be translated exactly
-
The Policeman of the 16th Precinct
It was already translated
Makrykostaioi and Kondogiorgides
-
They are just surnames
Ta kitrina gantia
The Yellow Gloves
-
O Klearhos, i Marina kai o kontos
Clearch, Marina and the short one
-
O atsidas
The Canny
-
Tis kakomoiras
There Will Be Fuss
It isn't easy to be translated exactly.
Polytehnitis kai erimospitis
Hadnyman and Factotum
It isn't easy to be translated exactly
-
My Friend Lefterakis
It was already translated

The Epilogue

These films belong to the Golden Era of Greek Cinema. And I think that the best Greek comedy films can be only found in this era... Of course there were a few amusing in the following decades. But they aren't as good as these!

This era is Greeks' the most favorite and it will be always remebered! This is why I didn't choose any modern film...

But I can't help it... So many and good films are missing. I don't want to skip them... A part 2 is necessary... (I will have a guilty conscience if I don't do it...)

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