Journey from Greece

7.01 h 36 min201713+
On a mission from her grandfather, young Djam joins a friend, Avril, to explore Europe. Together, they embark on an odyssey that will change their lives forever.
Tony Gatlif
Daphne PatakiaSimon AbkarianMaryne Cayon
English [CC]
Audio languages
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Supporting actors
Kimon KourisMichalis Iatropoulos
Ali AkdenizFrancis BoespflugFenia CossovitsaSuzan GüverteDelphine MantouletStéphane Parthenay
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3.9 out of 5 stars

15 global ratings

  1. 53% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 22% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 0% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 16% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 9% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

FexleyReviewed in the United States on May 12, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Small scale odyssey
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This 2017 Franco-Grec production by director Tony Gatlif is streaming on Amazon under the title Journey from Greece. I’d never heard of it before stumbling upon it while searching through Amazon Prime for something to watch. I hit the jackpot with this one. The sort of needle in the haystack I’m always hoping to find. Tony Gatlif is a Franco Algerian director best known in the US for his Gypsy trilogy which includes the 1993 film Latcho Drom. He’s got a deep filmography going back to 1975 and is an old hand and a known entity so you’d think a new release by him would attract some attention. Apparently not in the US – which is a real shame because this is a lovely film. Its a small scale odyssey of a young Rebetiko musician living on the island of Lesbos who’s sent on a solo mission to Istanbul to have a replacement connecting rod cast – so that her step-father can get his boat back in service. Her journey takes her through a bleak Southern Europe ravaged by Greece’s economic woes and the refugee crisis – which would be super depressing if not for Djam who radiates so much brash charisma we can see beyond the suffering. Djam sings, dances and blusters her way past troubles and picks up a sidekick along the way, a French girl who is lost and bereft of the resources Djam has in abundance. Djam embodies the spirit of Rebetiko, a working class ottoman folk music revived in the 60s much like the American 60s folk revival. In fact – when Djam comes across of group of Rebetiko musicians she knows from the festival circuit hanging out by a shuttered train station and joins them in a jam session, all I could think of was the complicity of Deadheads in the 1980s. Daphne Patakia as Djam is just extraordinary. I assumed after watching the film that she must be some well known Rebetiko musician but that’s not the case at all. She learned how to sing Rebetiko, to play the baglamas and to belly dance just for the role. The film is so well done and the lead is such a revelation that I felt I had to tell everyone I know bout it – but of course everyone I mentioned it to thought I was just blathering on about another crummy French movie.
10 people found this helpful
Buddy1492Reviewed in the United States on April 8, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
There's a lot in this movie
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This is another of those movies produced by European filmmakers from several countries working together. I like them because they often show a slice of society from a unique perspective, and this one is especially good. The odd thing about this film is how Djam's pussy takes on a character of its own. We are introduced to it in the first scene and throughout the movie it plays a role in much of what she does (as Avril points out) but it is never exploited in any sex scenes. The poverty of the region and how its people had to deal with the huge influx of Syrian refugees is always present but not overly dramatized. The locals manage to keep up their spirits with singing and dancing. Djam's heartwarming relationship with her stepfather is developed nicely. And then there's the French girl, Avril, tagging along sort of like a lost dog after Djam found her in Istanbul. I think what Avril went through near the end in Lesbos could have been fleshed out and made clearer, but I really enjoyed watching this and came away with a good feeling when it was over.
2 people found this helpful
APReviewed in the United States on March 8, 2020
1.0 out of 5 stars
Yuck -- why the nudity and perversion?
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I wanted to like this, but the main actress seems off her rocker, and totally possessed by a lust demon, ready to mate with, well, anything and anyone. It's unseemly. When said starlet goes after her co-traveller, well, that's enough to make me shut it down. What is UP with this generation of film makers that values sexuality -- and perverse sexuality -- above all else? Hey, here's a radical thought, would-be filmmakers, here's a true artistic challenge: make a film without smoldering same-sex sexuality -- make it about something much deeper. And while you're at it, howzabout you make it so that one's grandparent who thinks they may be in for a lovely film about Aegean culture wouldn't blanch in disgust?

4 people found this helpful
Shalom GorewitzReviewed in the United States on May 6, 2019
5.0 out of 5 stars
Great Acting and Story
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Whoever wrote the description for Amazon obviously didn't watch the film. As usual, director Tony Gatlif busts genres with a road movie featuring two young women. Daphne Patakia is brilliant as Djam, enigmatic, intense, generous, and a free spirit who guides Avril, played by Maryne Cayon toward self discovery. Gatlif again uses great music with a strong dose of Greek Repetiko and some astonishing dancing. Compared to his previous films, this one is somewhat understated. The awful shock of Avril's discovery of the mountain of disgarded life jackets off the shore of Lesbos is understood through her gestures and expression rather than words. Pne is aware that the refugees are close, but we don't see them. Gatlif fans will see this as a kind of companion peace to Gadjo Dilo, The Crazy Stranger. I was also reminded of Agnes Varda's Vagabond, but the flip side: community, compassion, art are antidotes to nihilism.
6 people found this helpful
errin spellingReviewed in the United States on April 6, 2019
5.0 out of 5 stars
You get to see the real people
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There is dancing and singing, like you have never seen.The tourists have left Greece and you see what it's like after this.
There is no grandfather,it's a step-father ,who she calls Uncle. After her mother died, he tries to raise her and tell her what's important, in life. The dancing is beautiful. The songs have real meaning,folk songs for people, unlike here in this country. We don't have this anymore.
5 people found this helpful
Leila n.Reviewed in the United States on May 28, 2019
5.0 out of 5 stars
In French and Greek with English subtitles
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this was an emotional roller coaster, as one vicariously travels with the girls meeting challenges, setbacks and finding some happy moments along the way. Sorrow is threaded throughout,in the stories of people they meet. I was very impressed by the spunkiness of Djam's character, and curious to see how she would evolve. Avril, her companion is mysterious and lost, so you wonder what will happen to her. I related to both characters and they reminded me of foolhardy actions and risks I took during youthful travels. I loved that the girls were complex and not fully explained by the narrative- there are discoveries, but they are still enigmatic and deep by the end of the film.
3 people found this helpful
AstridReviewed in the United States on August 21, 2019
5.0 out of 5 stars
Very good film!
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Very good film expressing the beauty and resilience that music, family and kindness can bring to lives that are facing the global griefs of cultural and political conflict, immigration and loss of home, and emotional breaking points of all the cumulative anguish. The music was phenomenal.
2 people found this helpful
Kevin HickeyReviewed in the United States on February 6, 2021
5.0 out of 5 stars
Outstanding--an unpredictable, serious, picaresque delight.
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Outstanding--an unpredictable, serious, picaresque delight.
One person found this helpful
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