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Culture

A Bicentennial Epic Film: Cliffs of Freedom

September 14, 2021
By Art Dimopoulos

Tripolitsa, 1821: the political, administrative, economic crossroads of the Ottoman Empire’s chokehold over Greece’s Peloponnese. Ali Pasha of Ioannina’s bold separatist efforts created the window of opportunity for the Greeks to launch their Revolution. It was now or never. The Greek’s war efforts are loosely coordinated, and battles loom large in smaller Ottoman strongholds. Tripolitsa is fortified behind a wall surrounding the city mounted by daunting cannons and armed sentries. Inside these walls are a large army and citizens living within the fortress.

General Theodoros Kolokotronis calculates that following successful campaigns in Levidi, Valtetsi, Doliana and Grana, a win in the stronghold of Tripolitsa would serve as a bellwether symbol of the Greeks’ resolve to fight for freedom at all costs. Kolokotronis launches an incessant campaign chipping away at the Ottoman’s enclave and Tripolitsa ultimately falls on September 23, 1821. A day marking the beginning of the end of Ottoman’s 400- year subjugation over Greece.

The National Hellenic Society (NHS) is a non-profit foundation comprised of a Who’s Who of visionaries, philanthropists and leaders that celebrate, share, and pass on Hellenic heritage in America. NHS programs include its signature Program, Heritage Greece which has reconnected and sponsored 500+ college aged students of Greek descent on a life-changing experience hosted by the American College of Greece.

This past year, NHS completed the acquisition of all rights to a major motion picture, Cliffs of Freedom. The film is an independent, historical drama romance movie based and inspired on a novel written by Marianne Metropoulos, Daughter of Destiny. The novel served as the springboard to the film produced by Marianne and Dean Metropoulos with Marianne serving as co-writer of the screenplay.

Cliffs of Freedom story centers on an ill-fated romance between a beautiful young Greek village girl set in the beginning days of Greece’s Revolutionary war. The girl, played by veteran actress, Tania Raymonde, falls in love with a handsome and conflicted Ottoman Colonel, portrayed by actor Jan Uddin. The Colonel is mentored by a Greek elder and advisor to the Empire, brilliantly portrayed by the late Academy-Award winning actor Christopher Plummer. The brutality of the war comes to a head when the Greek village girl’s family is massacred, she swears revenge directly implicating the man she loves which ultimately leads to a battle that changes the course of history for Greece and her people.

Marianne’s story is an amalgam of stories, accounts and events that transpired during Greece’s Revolutionary War. The lives, struggles, sacrifices and saga of the Greeks is brilliantly on full display, symbolic of the resiliency, resolve and grit of the Greek people determined to be free. Their deep faith, values and love of family, culture and heritage marks the first time their story is on full display on the silver screen in epic form. The film’s production values, acting, score and the caliber of cast and crew have created a motion picture that has riveted audiences.

NHS is celebrating the bicentennial of Greece’s Revolutionary War with the announcement of the film’s availability on Monday, September 13. Audiences are welcomed to watch and/or purchase the film on major platforms including Amazon Prime, Apple, and Google Play.  

The film’s storytellers, creators and artisans have come together to convey a story that will have a profound impact on audiences, especially for those that are the progeny of the forebears that lived so that others that followed would be free. All net proceeds of the film will support NHS’ signature, Heritage Greece Program which in 2022 will sponsor 100+ students of Greek descent on this life-changing educational and cultural immersion experience shared with a peer group of students from the American College of Greece in Athens.

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