Iphigenia ★★★★★

This film is an faithful adaptation of Iphigenia In Aulis, a play from
the 5th Century BCE by Euripides.

The Greek army, headed for Troy, is encamped by the sea.  Their ships
are ready to sail, but the winds won’t blow. The goddess Artemis has
been offended and the fleet will remain becalmed until a sacrifice is
made. Speaking through her head priest Artemis demands  that
Agamemnon, the leader of the army, sacrifice his eldest child,
Iphigenia. The king is understandably outraged and devastated at the
prospect of sacrificing his beloved daughter.

Director Michael Cacoyannis (Zorba the Greek) keeps the story moving and gets top performances from his actors.  Kostas Kazakos as Agamemnon and Kostas Karras as his brother Menelaos (the abduction of whose wife Helen has precipitated the Trojan War) are both fine, but top thespic honors must be reserved for the women. Thirteen-year-old Tatiana Papamoschou gives an amazingly mature and
moving performance in the title role for one of such tender years.
Best of all is the great Irene Pappas as Iphigenia’s mother Klytemnestra.  Pappas burns up the screen with the passion and intensity of her acting and easily dominates every scene she appears in. The film ends with a freeze frame closeup of Pappas’ face; her expression shows Klytemnestra’s  hatred for Agamemnon and the revenge she plans on him for the loss of their beloved daughter.