Movie Review: 'Attraction' ('Prityazhenie') Is Alluring Alien Drama

Attraction Prityazhenie Piton Evgeniy Sangadzhiev Artyom Alexander Petrov Ruslan Nikita Kukushkin Yulia Lebedeva Irina Starshenbaum
“Attraction” (“Prityazhenie”) is an alluring alien thriller that is seemingly a recent addition to Amazon Prime Video. Set in modern-day Moscow, the film begins with high school student, Yulia (Irina Starshenbaum), going about life as a usual teen. There is an added bit of excitement around her as a historic meteor shower has got everyone abuzz.

Breaking her father’s sensible orders, Yulia plunges into the heart of danger when she goes to a party with her paternally-unsanctioned boyfriend, Artyom (Alexander Petrov, “The Method”). Before long, everyone who has gathered to watch the event becomes the victims of an alien spacecraft crashing to earth. “Attraction,” showing off some commendable special effects in the process.

From there, Yulia is eventually rescued by an unplanned visitor in the alien, Hekon (Rinal Mukhametov, “Ekaterina: The Rise of Catherine the Great”). She opts to return the favor and help him back to his ship. The result is a contemplatively constructed love triangle that comes to be emotionally emblematic of “Attraction” and its premise.

Artyom is consumed in hate for the unknown that are the aliens and bitterly recruits others in his vitriolic plot. As he mounts a mission of malice, Yulia works on a restorative one, breaking free of the bonds of her blinding infatuation with her boyfriend. Moved by the loving nature of Hekon, Yulia finds herself slowly opening her heart to the view that the visiting alien shows her.

It is in seeing Hekon’s philosophy that Yulia begins to learn something about her earthly surroundings. In doing so, the allegory that “Attraction” presents is movingly conveyed, hitting its desired target with a stirring, final act. At over two hours, the pace remains consistent and well-rendered. A sense of time that those who binge-watch a series will be nary to notice.

Coming off of recently watching the powerful allegorically-rooted Russian series, “Better Than Us,” “Attraction” hits similar notes with a nuanced edge. The moral lines presented in the film are more comfortable to follow, and because of that, it conveys its message with a hearty dose of clarity.

The special effects are well-done and the actors well-cast. As pivotal as the love story is to the plot of “Attraction,” this viewer would have preferred Yulia’s compassion to have shown through earlier. She does some things that are downright mean to Hekon. However, his loving response seems to trigger her conscience.

In being so romantically driven, viewers have to believe that Hekon would fall in love with Yulia, and that is personally the hardest part to buy, given her behavior. As a reason-based romantic, it does not quite ring with the healthiness necessary to make their coupling worth rooting for. Thankfully, “Attraction” has a lot going for it as an overall piece of entertaining sci-fi drama, and it manages to land that quite astutely.

There is a sequel set to hit Russian theaters on January 1, 2020, entitled “Invasion.” A film that's existence provides added impetus to check out the first. Based on IMDb, it does appear that the main cast will be returning. In other good news, a follow-up means that “Attraction” does not truly end with its final minutes. A great thing to know, considering that another chapter is something the ending certainly left this viewer desiring.

Rating: 7/10

If you want to get a head start on the action, check out “Attraction” on Amazon Prime Video!

[Featured Image by Maximov Vladimir]