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To Cleanse Thy Cinematic Palate


Marina is 23 years old, she works, spends time with her father during his chemotherapy treatments, explores a jealous curiosity with her best girlfriend, the socially experienced Bella, and expresses an overall disinterest to everything and everyone else. Marina questions if there is anything else more satisfying, and at the same time she doesn’t seem to want to put in the passion and energy required to find that answer.

Attenberg is a Greek drama that made the film festival rounds in 2010 and 2011, largely piggybacking on the success of Dogtooth, whose director Giorgos Lanthimos, plays a supporting role in this film. Keep in mind, this movie is not as wild and quirky as Dogtooth. This a very still film that is punctuated by fits of playfulness by the characters, and it’s in that punctuation that the story becomes very endearing.

Ariane Labed exudes detached precision as Marina. Ariane is likely to garner a wider audience between her work here, in Lanthimos’s 2011 release, Alps, as well as Richard Linklater’s highly anticipated Before Midnight.There are enough bits of originality in Attenberg to draw your attention, and it wouldn’t be surprising to see an American indie style remake complete with a hip soundtrack and vintage clothing.

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