By Michael Fox

San Francisco Greek Film Festival
Oct. 3–10
Online and drive-in

Who knew the S.F. Greek Film Festival has been around for 17 years? Paradoxically, in the year of the pandemic, the fest is taking its light from under a bushel and reaching out to a broader audience. How? By making its program of streaming offerings completely free. The only paid event is the Oct. 4 drive-in screening of Jules Dassin’s wonderful 1964 caper comedy Topkapi at Par 3 at Poplar Creek in San Mateo.

The market for foreign films in the U.S. was shrinking long before the pandemic, and its hellishly difficult for Greek movies to find distribution. Even a slew of Hellenic Academy Awards (best feature film, actor, supporting actor, supporting actress, production design) wasn’t enough to land a U.S. buyer for My Name is Eftihia. From that perspective, the S.F. Greek Film Festival’s presentation of Angelos Frantzis’ epic drama about the poet and lyricist Eftihia Papagianopoulou is something of a gift.

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