A Futuristic World of Black and White

by Alan Rapp on July 24, 2007

in Home Video

  • Title: Renaissance
  • IMDb: link


Inspector Barthélémy Karas (Daniel Craig) is put on the case to find the missing IIona Tasuiev (Romola Garai), a leading scientist of Avalon, the largest and most powerful company in Paris in the year 2054 whose main focus is genetic research and the search for eternal youth.

With the help of Bislane (Catherine McCormack), Illona’s sister and a record keeper at Avalon, Karas begins searching for the missing scientist, but what he finds are half-truths and lies.  What was she working on that the company wants kept quiet?  Why was she kidnapped?  And once Karas learns the truth, what will he do with information that could change the world forever?

The film is both wonderous and quite brutal.  The hard look of the film’s stark black and white animation mirror the personality of Karas who is forced to make hard decisions throughout the film.  Seen here Pairs is a dark city, one without hope, much like Karas himself.

The harsh look of the film will turn many off, but to me I found the deep shadows and contrast of the film to be visually stunning.  Although the mystery and sci-fi elements don’t quite live up to the look of the film, they are good enough to keep you interested and invested in the outcome and all the secrets that it holds.

Renaissance works well as a film, but even more so as an experience in a very different type of filmmaking.  Although many people compared it to Sin City (which I also loved) the film is far more reminiscent of hardcore futuristc sci-fic mysteries like Blade Runner or Dark City.

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