Renaissance - film noir et blanc

Duration: 105min
Category: action
Available: On DVD
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Dystopian future stories have always fascinated me. They connect to something in our current society that needs to be explored to its logical conclusion. Also satisfying is how these stories allow us to play out a possible solution. Even in the bleakest there is a suggestion for redemption. In this case, its about rejecting immortality. Go figure.

Renaissance is French sci fi animated in stark blacks and whites. It's striking to see if not a little dizzying. You begin to adjust to the images about half way through and can appreciate the cold world they create. It isn't until some colour actually appears near the end that it becomes apparent again just how jarring the style is.

One of the problems of these cool films is that underneath the style is a story that doesn't hold up. So many films want to be Blade Runner without managing to make a compelling plot or characters. Renaissance isn't bad. Its story is interesting enough to propel you through the story but it's just not exciting enough to match the harsh look of the film. At the end of the story I had to ask myself if I was emotionally invested or if I just reacted to how super cool it looked. I came up somewhere in the middle.

Fortunately the ending is strong enough that it doesn't disappoint. So many of these films set up an impossible to resolve plot and some esoteric ending has to be tacked on to warp it up. Fortunately, that's not the case here. This ending is completely satisfying.

Due to the look of the film, Renaissance may not be accessible for those not comfortable with this genre and the story may not overcome those limitations. However, for those already interested, Renaissance delivers.

Review By: Collin Smith

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