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Why 'Attenberg' Tops Indiewire's DVD Picks This Week

Photo of Nigel M Smith By Nigel M Smith | Indiewire June 19, 2012 at 9:43AM

This week on DVD/Blu-ray: A critically acclaimed Greek export; the latest from the Duplass brothers; a sexy French menage-a-four; a spiritual journey 20 years in the making; and a film tailor-made for the Alamo Drafthouse crowd.
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Kino Lorber "Attenberg"

This week on DVD/Blu-ray: A critically acclaimed Greek export; the latest from the Duplass brothers; a sexy French menage-a-four; a spiritual journey 20 years in the making; and a film tailor-made for the Alamo Drafthouse crowd.

"Attenberg"

With the festival favorite "Attenberg," Greek director Athina Rachel Tsangari proved that there's room for two great up-and-coming filmmakers in the region (the other being "Dogtooh" director Yorgos Lanthimos, who actually appears in "Attenberg").

The oddball yet totally endearing drama centers on Marina, a 23-year-old girl living with her ailing architect father in a factory town by the sea, who is slowly coming to grips with the fact that he will soon no doubt pass away. To deal with the upcoming loss, Marina hides her emotions by behaving very boldly.

"With its persistent inventiveness and a lack of unearned sentimentality, the movie provides an antidote to a lot of lazily produced dramas about death, American or otherwise," Eric Kohn wrote in his review. "Its style is directly connected to its themes with a persistent inventiveness."

Extras: None, unfortunately.


"Jeff, Who Lives at Home"

"Jeff, Who Lives at Home," the latest from Jay and Mark Duplass ("The Puffy Chair," "Cyrus") stars Jason Segel as the titular Jeff, a 30-year old slacker stuck living at home, and still waiting for his true destiny to smack him in the face. Ed Helms -- who fits so perfectly into the Duplass universe it's a wonder this marks his first time working with the pair -- plays Jeff's marginally more successful brother, while Susan Sarandon gives a great turn as their widowed mother.

"Veering from slapstick comedy to soul-searching revelations, "Jeff, Who Lives at Home" doesn't always satisfy expectations, but it also routinely defies them," wrote Kohn in his review. "Just as "Baghead" toyed with the horror genre before revealing its true colors as a lopsided romantic comedy, "Jeff, Who Lives at Home" borrows the faces and situations of conventional American entertainment and uses them in an excitingly unique fashion."

Extras: Shockingly enough you'll find nothing, except for an Ultraviolet copy of the film for streaming.

"Four Lovers"

You can always count on the French to add a little kink to their romantic dramas. The sexy "Four Lovers" is no exception. The film centers on a couple who decide to test the boundaries of their relationship by swapping partners. Of course what starts as a fun, free-spirited experiment soon devolves into a troubling hotbed of anger, desire and confusion.

Extras: Deleted scenes; original French theatrical trailer; and two archival films from the Oscilloscope vault ("Who's Right?" and "Jealousy").


"My Reincarnation"

Jennifer Fox's spiritual documentary "My Reincarnation" made headlines in 2011 after raising $154,456 via the crowd-funding website Kickstarter, becoming the top-raising finished film in the platform's history and their fourth highest earning film project at any production phase. The film, which chronicles a High Tibetan Buddhist teacher and his Western-born son's tenuous relationship, is a moving documentary that spans a whopping 20 years (!) in the lives of the two subjects.

Extras: Deleted scenes and highlights from the NYC premiere.


"The FP"

Those looking for a giddy, deranged time should rent "The FP." Set in a dystopian future, "The FP" centers on two rival gangs feuding over control of Frazier Park (FP, get it?). Their preferred method of battle? Dance-fighting.

"Although patently absurd, sometimes to tiring extremes, "The FP" contains glimmers of creative ingenuity in its fantastical representation of videogame culture," wrote Kohn in his review out of the SXSW Film Festival, where the film world premiered in 2011. "And the dialogue, which turns bro-speak into a virtually indecipherable new language, never loses its appeal. (Some samples: "There's gonna be an off-the-frizz party tonight;" "You've always been more than a slash on my list, yo;" "Check a look at this"). No matter its inanities, the movie is certainly a wonder to behold; it's an indulgent work of pop art that affectionately mocks its influences and never lets up."

Extras: An audio commentary with two of the film's stars; "Never Ignorant Getting Goals Accomplished," a making-of documentary; a post-screening Q&A; and both the green and red band trailers for the film.

This article is related to: Small Screens