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Ghost of a Chance (2001)
"Aionios foititis" (original title)

 -  Drama  -  12 April 2002 (Greece)
6.0
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Ratings: 6.0/10 from 123 users  
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In the casino there is only one queen, the small ball that spins on the roulette table. None of the players pays the slightest attention to the female dealers. But Takis, a «perennial» med ... See full summary »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Emilios Chilakis ...
Takis (as Aimílios Cheilákes)
Maria Solomou ...
Vera Nakopoulou
Spyros Stavrinidis ...
Leonidas Nakopoulos
Stelios Christoforidis
Michalis Iatropoulos
Smaragda Karydi
Kostas Markopoulos
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Gianna Anastasiou
Yannis Astrakakis
Ignatios Axis
Poly Beleni
Eleni Deloudi
Vagelis Dimitriou
Nektarios Farmakis
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Storyline

In the casino there is only one queen, the small ball that spins on the roulette table. None of the players pays the slightest attention to the female dealers. But Takis, a «perennial» med student, doesn't go to the casino to win millions but to earn a day's wages. Vera works in a gym but trains and gets a second job as a dealer. Her aim is to protect her mother since regulations forbid relatives of employees from entering the casino. Let her Dad knock himself out. There's no way he'll ever play roulette again! At some point, Takis and Vera become lovers. They rig a game at the roulette table, leave the money with her mother and hide out in a friend's house, where their romantic dream soon succumbs to the wretched conditions in which they live. When her father dies of a heart attack in his Jeep, Vera suddenly finds herself with money. At the funeral, the manager of the casino threatens to send her to prison... Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A casino heist like you have never seen!

Genres:

Drama

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Release Date:

12 April 2002 (Greece)  »

Also Known As:

Ghost of a Chance  »

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1.66 : 1
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Connections

Features Raging Bull (1980) See more »

Soundtracks

Tres Avisos
by Calexico
LP "Hot Rail"
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User Reviews

 
A Script That Wanders On The Outskirts Of Logic Leaves Only A Neutral Impression From A Rather Indistinct Storyline.
8 October 2008 | by (Mountain Mesa, California) – See all my reviews

This premiere film for the Greek writer/director Vangelis Seitanidis made the festival rounds within the European continent as well as the United States, gaining the Best Film award at the Thessaloniki Fest in 2001, where Seitanidis was also accorded honours as Best New Director, and where third billed in this film Spyros Stavrinidis garnered the Best Supporting Actor prize. From this same event, Seitanidis took home a trophy for Best Screenplay of the Year, given by The Hellenic Association of Playwrights. The picture's American debut occurred at the 2003 Houston Worldfest where it gained many admirers, and it was well received in 2004 at San Francisco's Greek Film Festival. All of which may cause a discerning viewer to wonder if the competition was something less than potent for a piece that provides only passable entertainment value, as it teeters bootlessly 'twixt being a melodrama of romance and a work of crime based suspense. Takis (Emilios Chilakis), a medical student whose ethics are essentially non-existent, is only barely supporting himself as a minimum stakes player at roulette in a hinterland resort casino, where he discovers that a large stakes gambler who shares the same table, Leonidas (Stavrinidis) is utilizing his numbers. When challenged, Leonidas convinces Takis, over the latter's objections, that they should function as a team. Their alliance becomes increasingly significant after Takis is expelled from his university for cheating, while at the same time falling in love with a newly hired young novice dealer, Vera (Maria Solomou), who just happens to be the daughter of Leonidas, her father thereby forbidden from entering the casino due to his offspring being employed there. Not being discouraged by this turn of events, the older man arranges for Takis to play in his stead, using funds of the veteran gambler, while retaining 30% of any winnings. Having been ejected from school for cribbing during an examination, Takis is hoping to sustain himself solely through his partnership with crafty Spyros, but since that compulsive gambler's time and attention are used as an actively radical labour union official while additionally campaigning for public office, it becomes plain to Takis that he will be unable to achieve more than a modest amount at the gaming tables. It also soon becomes clear to him that Vera has more hunger for money than for Takis, as she instigates an amourous relationship with her supervisor, the casino pit boss, performed by Stelios Christoforidis, and in an attempt to offset her carelessly slatternly ways, Takis decides that he may bring her round to favour him through suggesting a method by which the two can steal a large sum of cash from the gambling establishment. Normally, for a crime caper film of this sort, the responsible production team attempts to create a narrative that will provide agonizing moments of suspense to viewers, but in this instance the primary concern for the felonious pair would appear to be how they might share proceeds taken during the heist, and how they may be able to remain together, as they do not have immediate access to the purloined cash. The crime itself is neither shown nor discussed. Additionally, since the film opens with Takis in prison, a viewer will not have the foggiest idea as to any interrelationship between his theft and the means of his apprehension. Unfortunately, this is typical of the wayward writing that eventually undermines the work, and that is as well largely responsible for the failure of the piece to receive distribution removed from the festival circuit. It is shot with 35mm film, in 1.66:1 widescreen process, and is recorded with monaural sound. A good deal of the musical track is supplied by "Calexico" and by Bob Dylan's single of "Romance in Durango." A little more attention to English subtitle accuracy would have been useful to those viewers not fluent in Modern Greek. Although at times vigourously, yet too often variably, fashioned, the screenplay undermines efforts by the stronger players such as Stavrinidis and Christoforidis.


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