Monday, April 9, 2012
The Greek New Wave picture “Attenberg” is a coming-of-age film about a 23-year-old, which alone starts it with a reserve of goodwill (just because high school is over doesn’t mean she’s magically gained experience). The young woman in question, Marina, lives in a coastal factory town and spends her days playing foosball, choreographing routines with her best friend Bella, and caring for her dying father. With the promiscuous Bella and a local who shares her love for the band Suicide, Marina begins to give form to her identity and sexuality. There’s a memorable scene in which the girls dance-walk down a sidewalk adjoining a public park to the melancholy strains of “Tous Les Garçons et Les Filles,” totally ignored by the sk8rboiz a few feet away. But too many of the movie’s ideas are unformed. We only ever hear two Suicide songs, and the connection to the David Attenborough nature documentaries Marina watches (or why Bella’s mispronunciation of his name gets titular pride of place) is never made clear.