11 user 3 critic

Matchbox (2002)

Spirtokouto (original title)
During an unbearably hot Athenian summer, a cramped flat becomes a hellish urban battlefield for an ornamental paterfamilias and his family. Now, ugly truths and deleterious words become weapons in a dirty war. Can they emerge unscathed?


Yannis Economides
1 win. See more awards »


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Cast overview:
Errikos Litsis ... Dimitris
Eleni Kokkidou Eleni Kokkidou ... Maria
Costas Xikominos ... Giorgos
Giannis Voulgarakis ... Vangelis
Ioanna Ivanoudi Ioanna Ivanoudi ... Margarita
Stavros Yagoulis Stavros Yagoulis ... Loukas
Angeliki Papoulia ... Kiki (as Aggeliki Papoulia)
Serafita Grigoriadou ... Angela


Against the backdrop of an unbearably hot and dry Athenian summer, the early signs of an ignoble defeat are already taking their toll on the weary, lost, and utterly alone coffee shop owner, Dimitris. Little by little, yielding under the pressure of a risky new business venture, the ornamental paterfamilias becomes a pulsating black hole that sucks everyone inside who dares to challenge his frail authority--a disillusioned wife; an indifferent son; a rebellious daughter, and a reluctant associate. Indeed, this is hell on earth--a fiery inferno of traitors and enemies where a family of cursed suburbanites is doomed to coexist with each other. Now, ugly truths, shocking revelations, and deleterious words become lethal weapons in a dirty war within a cramped and nightmarish urban battlefield. Sadly, there are no allies here. Can Dimitris and his family emerge unscathed? Written by Nick Riganas

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

2000s | fight | athens | greece | greek | See All (55) »


Beware. War in Four Walls!





Official Sites:

official site





Release Date:

14 March 2003 (Greece) See more »

Also Known As:

Matchbox See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


The movie was screened during 2002-2003 and sold 3.800 tickets. It came 10th out of 20 movies. See more »


Spoofed in Abusing G.P.S. (2014) See more »


Alejandro Diaz and the Tierra Brava (2003)
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User Reviews

A movie of breakthrough reality, summarises the conditions in many families and picks an area of the West suburbs of Athens
4 February 2007 | by koustaslSee all my reviews

The actors performance is unmatched. The storyline emphasis is on inner family relationships. The priorities of the family members, the father figure that although means well, he is discredited due to his manners and short temper.

It has a lot to provide to the audience, and requires deep thought and understanding of the characters. The mother figure is shocking. The realism of the film is phenomenal and leaves with unanswered questions, it does not attempt give a clear solution nor an explanation, it just shows the conditions that sadly are more than common specially in west suburbs of Athens.

The verbal insults are emphasised and my personal opinion is that this is so because they shape the reality of the family life. Although in the family they show to be ignored, as in common language, they are copied by the children, and shape their characters.

The father figure focuses on his business and money, while gives a dictator attitude believing its the right way to raise the family as he feels everybody else is incompetent. This attitude is reflected by the indifference and hate of the family towards the father.

The directorhas managed to provide a modern time tragedy.

Features: The father with the archetypes of the 50's applied to modern society, monocrat, strong short-tempered. The role of the mother in shaping the character of the family.

The children who become identical to the parents they have rejected. Overall its a film that requires prior experience (I know I have) to understand the realism of the characters deeply and shows the interactions at multiple levels. Excellent work by Yiannis Economidis.

"Spirtokouto" -> Matchbox metafor of a "small house", if one match burns in the box, all of them are set on fire, burning the box too. (My personal metaphor translation)

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