Dyskoloi apohairetismoi: O babas mou (Hard Goodbyes: My Father)
Dyskoloi apohairetismoi: O babas mou (Hard Goodbyes: My Father) (2003)

Penny Panayotopoulou's debut feature, Dhiskoli Apoheretismi: O Babas Mou (Hard Goodbyes: My Father), is a drama about an Athenian family coping with a death. In May 1969, ten-year old Elias (Giorgos Karayannis) is obsessed with the… More

Rated: Unrated
Running Time:
Release Date: November 21, 2003
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Critic Score: 85% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: Karayannis handles the lead role well, and the result is a poignant exploration of grief.

Frank Scheck
Hollywood Reporter

A tender and moving drama that deserves wider exposure.

Laura Kern
New York Times

Considering the delicate and weighty subject matter, the film's tone is surprisingly light, sometimes even humorous, which helps to balance the harsh sentiments that death inevitably brings.

Full review…
Ed Gonzalez
Slant Magazine

Goes from being appropriately child-like to simply childish.

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V.A. Musetto
New York Post

Hard Goodbyes could easily have been maudlin, but isn't. Credit an adult script and realistic acting, especially by Giorgos Karayannis as Elias.

R. Emmet Sweeney
Village Voice

A tender Greek drama documenting a child's disbelief in the face of his father's death.

Rob Thomas
Capital Times (Madison, WI)

Panayotopoulou's story has the ring of autobiographical truth, getting the details of the period and of childhood in general right at every turn.

Elizabeth Weitzman
New York Daily News

Panayotopoulou does handle the material with sensitivity, but she relies too much on her young hero's unlikely precocity, which unwittingly diminishes the intensity of a child's very real grief.

Tom Keogh
Seattle Times

About nothing so much as a soulful kid's first encounter with the most literal and poetic meanings of the word 'gone.'

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Bill White
Seattle Post-Intelligencer

A sublimely subjective journey from denial to acceptance as a 10-year-old boy comes to terms with the finality of death.

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