This is what love at first sight looks like. When Maja sees Leah for the first time, everything ceases to matter to her: a waning acting career, a settled life in Copenhagen, conventions. Romance explodes between them like a supernova, and Maja decides to take the leap and accept everything in Leah. Even her strange seizures, after which she’s not quite herself, and her close relationship with her uptight, distrustful mother, an Orthodox Jewess.
Gabriel Bier Gislason’s “Attachment” is first and foremost a horror film – claustrophobic and suffocating. Maja, a shiksa with no knowledge of Jewish customs and beliefs, feels alienated in Leah’s family home. Tension grows between her and her lover’s mother, who is struggling to hide her resentment. Maja’s ignorance also causes her imagination to play tricks. What she fails to understand, in her mind, takes on a grim appearance straight out of a horror film. But “Attachment” is also a romance – about love capable of overcoming even the darkest obstacle. It’s also a comedy (albeit a very grim one), as Gislason initially feeds the audience with tropes straight out of “Meet the Fockers”: awkward first meetings of future in-laws. However, the clumsy conversations, blunders, and arguments quickly drift off the screen. “Attachment” instills fear with its evocative depiction of close family bonds.
Gislason’s production is a directorial display by a filmmaker who is definitely worth following in the years to come. The whole story is built on the creations of four actors, and it’s difficult to take your eyes off them during the screening. Josephine Park (“The Investigation”) gives a spectacular performance as a woman who can do anything for her new love, Ellie Kendrick (“Game of Thrones”) sends shivers down the spine as Leah, and Sofie Gråbøl (Sarah Lund from “The Killing”) moves and terrifies at the same time as a mother willing to descend into hell for the sake of her only child.
directed by: Gabriel Bier Gislason script: Gabriel Bier Gislason cast: Josephine Park, Ellie Kendrick, Sofie Gråbøl, David Dencik director of photography: Valdemar Winge Leisner music: Johan Carøe editor: Nikoline Løgstrup language: English, Danish subtitles: Polish