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A journey to the End of Europe

ANOMIA A journey to the end of Europe The Transition of Greece. A road trip through the country, looking for the tracks of this transition: How public debts and austerity have changed the social structure of the Greek society and what it means to live in a country in which the public community is breaking down. A movie about the clash of two social realities; about the contradictions of economy and humanity. A movie about the cracks in the civilization of a continent in times of uprising.

Anomia – a word that stands for a republic of slow decay, as well as for a desperate state of mind. In Anomia the needs of a majority are overruled and prejudiced by the dictate of public debt and corruption. It’s a word-creation derived from the sociological term “anomy” (German origin), which is used to describe social disintegration. Anomy means the creeping breakdown of a social community. One world is colonizing the other. The global financial markets - effective, fast and complex, - are taking over the communities. The economic and social crisis of Greece is an example of a process which is occurring all around the world. Societies are converted and prepared for embracing the global structure of a computer-based financial system. The collateral damage inflicted upon the social infrastructure by this process is what politicians call „painful but necessary cuts“. But why are these cuts

necessary? Why are cuts in the social welfare system necessary? Why is the reduction of average wages, the sale of public infrastructure or the prolongation of weekly work-hours and working life of a people necessary? Only to get rid of public debt? Why is it necessary to accept real misery and desolation in re-


ANOMIA A journey to the end of Europe turn for a positive balance on a virtual spreadsheet? Imagine a big hall, a datacenter, totally aseptic and sterile. Powerful computers process the algorithms of the global financial system. Their calculations are based on a certain idea of human nature: Everything human beings do – whatever it may be – is exclusively done for their own profit. But isn’t that a dangerous reduction of the human nature? Of course it is! But it is paramount in order to introduce the variable of humanity into a behavioral equation. What about the complexities of the human mind and behavior? What about communities, friendship and love? Are these just negligible elements in a struggle for personal profit?

We begin a journey from theory into reality. The prologue is captured in the view of an onlooker: The statistic perspective on Greek society and economics, a distant view on the financial world, the facts, the sociological context as well as the aesthetics and symbols of a highly technologized stock market environment. The framing is impersonal and distant. Facts are transported by interviews and inserts. Then we leave this perspective. We want to get closer to life in Greece and observe it with the eye of an ethnologist. So we start our journey and within this journey the narrative of the movie is established. The perspective of the framing will often be a point-of-view-shot of the traveller, who will remain anonymous. His view is a projection surface for the spectator who should be able to immerse himself in the experiences gathered by the traveller. In this view the focus rests on immediate and naturalistic impressions as well as on evolved structures. It will be the sight of people, culture and details - shown through a mobile manual camera at interpersonal encounters.


ANOMIA A journey to the end of Europe Starting at the Albanian-Greek border, the journey continues through northern Greece, the rural areas of Thrace, the city Thessaloniki, finally heading south to Patras and Athens. In the end there is a wall – in Orestiadia, close to Turkish border – which stands as the eastern frontier of the European Union. A wall protected by the military, twelve kilometers long. A wall which separates nations, political systems, humans and opportunities. Or has it already become nothing more than a line in a globalized calculation?


ANOMIA A journey to the end of Europe Production data

Research: Winter 2011/12 - ? Shooting Greece: August 2013 Shooting Frankfurt, Brussels: Winter 2013/14 Postproduction, Research Archive Material: Fall 2013-summer 2014

Stefan Laher

Magdalena Mayer

Idea, Conception, Research

Production, Cinematography, Editing

Filmmaker Free Journalist 0043 650 6418715 0049 151 26872995 0043 650 2012795


Anomia - A journey to the end of Europe  
Anomia - A journey to the end of Europe  

Documentary about economic changes in Greece and Europe and how they effect humanity and society.