The Greek drama by Argyris Papadimitropoulos – “Suntan”, has been labelled as a coming of middle-age story, but I think this could apply to a larger male population as well under certain circumstances.
Set in the beach resort island of Antiparos, the film begins with a forty-something Kostis (Makis Papadimitriou) arriving off-season to take up his new job as the local doctor. In a community whose economic activity is almost entirely centred around the few months of summer, Kostis encounters a friendly and leisurely populace who do the best to make him feel at home.
Kostis nevertheless negotiates those quiet winter months with a degree of comfort, having used to living by his own all these years. He had never married and of late had already given up even trying to look for a relationship. However, the following summer would change his life to an extent he wouldn’t have imagined when he first set foot on the island.
When young and flirty Anna (Elli Tringou) barges into his surgery with her mates after falling off a bike, she gives him a ‘thank you’ kiss and invites him to join them one of these days at the beach. Kostis, partly due to his infatuation for Anna, and partly envious of their lifestyle, goes looking for them one afternoon and also manages to get acquainted with the free-spirited (and free-loving) naturist group of five that includes men and women.
Problems begin after Anna agrees and makes love to Kostis on one occasion – he falls headlong in love with her afterwards. Anna wasn’t expecting this, and understandably freaks out after he demands an explanation for going away with her friends for the weekend without informing him. She tries to set the record straight and make him understand that she hadn’t intended to start a relationship with anyone, but by then the boat had already set sail and Kostis’s delusions have taken over the better of him…
The film is a brutal and frank interpretation of not just an instance of unrequited love, but also the generation gap and contrasting worldviews that result from certain outdated attitudes towards women and sexual relationships. It also serves as a warning against misreading social situations that one might come to regret later. Recommended Viewing..!
The Nudity: Elli Tringou, Hara Kotsali, Marcus Collen, Milou Van Groesen, Syllas Tzoumerkas, Makis Papadimitriou, and others
Since many scenes are set in a beach where nudity is the norm, there are many instances of nudity, but more so from Elli Tringou whose character is always seen nude while on the beach.