Sunday, January 20, 2013
Director: Giorgos Lanthimos
Mini - Synopsis: "Alps" refers to a group of actors who stand-in for those who have recently departed. Family members of the deceased hire Alps to help alleviate their grief.
Ro: 3 Stars - Alps contains a lot of promise that isn't fully utilized. Going in I had no idea what to expect and the initial exposition is a challenge in finding a flow to engage with. Lanthimos gives you bits of conversation that have a significance the viewer is not yet privy to. As it comes together and the darkness of the Alps group is more clearly understood, though, I became enticed to see where this could lead - it just didn't travel quite as far as I felt it could have. The story never really leaves Anne, Aggeliki Papouli, giving an impressively subtle performance, so it has hints of being a character study. Alps is dark and unique, my frustration mostly stems from wishing the ending spiral would have been of greater magnitude for Anne.
Joe: 2 Stars - I have great respect for director Giorgos Lanthimos. I was incredibly excited for Alps after viewing his earlier film, Dogtooth. The style that Lanthimos uses is very minimalistic with subtle undertones of creepily abnormal. This film had a great atmosphere, but seemed a bit unfocused. At only 93 minutes running time, this one felt like a marathon. We spend most of our time following our characters pretending to be deceased family members. While this was very interesting at first, I began to find myself anxious to dig into our main characters' personalities. I never quite felt satisfied as to the motivations and purposes of our characters. Overall, Alps was a very intriguing film that left me a bit disappointed.