Saturday, June 29, 2013

Beyond the Black Rainbow- What did I just watch?!

Title: Beyond the Black Rainbow
Written: Panos Cosmatos 
Directed by: Panos Cosmatos
Released: December 2010
Rated R
My Rating: 6.5/10 lightsabers
I was browsing through Netflix a few weeks ago and saw a movie called Beyond the Black Rainbow. I watched the trailer and I knew I had to watch this movie. A trippy, science fiction movie? A telepathic girl escaping from some weird institute? Sold.

Beyond the Black Rainbow is a Canadian science fiction movie written and directed by Panos Cosmatos (what an awesome name).

Set in the 1980's, Dr. Barry Nyle is the scientist in charge of this strange, futuristic commune called The Arboria Institue. The Arboria Institute, a place where science, spirituality, and a lot of hallucinogens converge, was founded in the 1960's by Dr. Arboria. Dr. Barry Nyle has taken over the institute and is keeping a psychic girl named Elena hostage by using a giant prism to suppress her abilities. She never speaks throughout the entire movie. Just does a lot of eye fluttering. Dr. Nyle is easily one of the creepiest characters I've ever seen. Everything about him spells "psycho". Sound strange enough yet?

 The first half of the movie is dedicated to Dr. Nyle being creepy to Elena and trying to illicit some kind of emotional response from her. There is a flashback where we see him take some kind of hallucenogen and enter a pool of black ink then reemerge and his skin begins to melt. I'm not sure if I can accurately describe that scene because everything about it is just crazy weird.

My favorite scene in the movie is when we first encounter the sentionaut. A Sentionaut is, I'm assuming, a robot that is activated if Elena escapes from her room. I just love them. I thought they looked super cool and they have really weird heads, as you can see below.

 Towards the end of the movie, Elena has to find her way out of the Arboria institute. Unfortunately, she has a tracking device so Dr. Nyle is on her trail. I won't tell you the ending, but I will say I'm up in the air about it. I don't hate the ending, but I'm not sure if I like it. One thing I LOVE about this movie is the pacing and the soundtrack. I enjoy slow paced movies if the pacing is done right and I think Mr. Cosmatos has doe it right. The soundtrack is full of sythesizers and is very...sedating? I can imagine a college kid in the 80's lighting a bowl and listening to this soundtrack.

Beyond the Black Rainbow is a unique film, but will not be for everyone. The film is deliberately slow and not to mention weird. I love weird movies and slow paces, but not everyone does. I applaud Mr. Cosmatos for making this movie. I have a feeling it will become a cult favorite. Also, make sure you watch through the credits. There is an extra scene once the credits end that leave you even more confused!

Have you seen Beyond the Black Rainbow? If so, what did you think?

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