Todd Rohal's strange and hilarious THE GUATEMALAN HANDSHAKE played on the festival circuit for a couple years (where I first saw it and let me say it's one of the most out there indie films I've seen), earned a loyal cult following, and yet now that it's on home video as a wicked awesome 2 DVD set, it's still an underground surprise nobody knows about!!! I Googled what the the pros are saying about Benten Films' new DVD.
"One of the most inventive, most poetic, most disarmingly authentic indies of the last few years... Why was "Napoleon Dynamite," with its relatively stereotypical uber-misfit, a hit, while this 2006 daydream foundered out of sight?"
- Michael Atkinson, IFC NEWS
"We meet people with funny names and see images that make us laugh and snap the elastic of our underpants, but the root of this film's strength is the sad beauty of loneliness and loss that sneaks inside our heads when we lose our power... Subject now for discovery by ancillary markets, alternative distribution, word-of-mouth recommendation and happenstance exposure, I predict that this film will not only endure the savage b**** of festival rejection and media neglect, but will find itself the harness of inspiration for artists to come."
- David Gordon Green, director of PINEAPPLE EXPRESS
"Rohal manages a tone of vague melancholy (and a few laugh-out-loud offhand bits), and it's possible to see all the weirdness as an honest, sideways grasp at magic... a gorgeous 2-disc DVD from the new label Benten Films."
- Mark Asch, THE L MAGAZINE
"Here is a film that operates on the same logic that compelled Benjamin Franklin to recommend the turkey, rather than the eagle, as a symbol for the newly formed United States; it holds no illusions about itself, and its idea of majesty is decidedly against the grain."
- David Lowery, DRIFTING
"A revelation! THE GUATEMALAN HANDSHAKE holds a place in my heart that is normally reserved for Easter candy."
- Jared Hess, director of NAPOLEON DYNAMITE