Produced by Yorgos Lanthimos, the man responsible for Dogtooth , Athina Rachel Tsangari's Attenberg could easily be described as more of the same. Luckily for fans of world cinema, while Attenberg does share the same bizarre, obtrusive style, the filmmakers do enough to separate Attenberg in a way that makes those comparisons almost feel superficial. The title references David Attenborough, the man responsible for tons of BBC documentaries studying animals, as one of Attenberg's major intentions lies in reminding the viewer that people are just another part of the vast ecological system of life. The film also tackles the sociopolitical issues in Greech, examining the decaying state of values, particularly as it relates to the dissolution of the family unit. Taking place in a small town with a massively deserted factory, Attenberg follows Marina, a 20-something female who is just beginning to experiment with her sexuality. Marina's father is dying of cancer, and while the treatments don't seem to be working, he constantly laments about the desire to be cremated when he dies, which apparently is looked at in a negative light in Greece. Marina's best friend, Bella, is another major character, and well lets just say she is far more experienced sexually. Attenberg is a film that makes a conscience decision to not really care that much about the feelings or emotions of its characters, opting instead to focus on the actions of them, studying these characters much like a nature documentary would. The film offers no determined conclusions either, giving off the aura of an observational study, a bizarre one at that. Like 'Dogtooth' the film draws many parallel's between humans and their primitive/animalistic nature, while also featuring well designed visuals that do the real storytelling. One of my favorite attifbutes is the visual design, with the whole film being shot in the gloomy, grey color palette which captures the hopelessness of these characters in this setting. The cinematography wisely features a very static and sterile camera as well, with beautifully designed compositions that elicit the emotion of the sequence. Athina Rachel Tsangari's Attenberg is a film I'd be scared to recommend to a lot of people, as it's a film that will definitely divide audiences with its dark, dry humor and narrative-light observational style. While the obvious comparison is Dogtooth, Attenberg does enough to stand on its own, being a obtuse examination of Greece
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