Hey, all! McEric here with a review of the new Sci-Fi film 2067, out today from RLJE films in theatres, on demand, and digital. Check out the trailer:
47 years in the future, mankind has been ravaged by a planet-wide oxygen shortage brought on by environmental neglect and rampant deforestation. Plants are extinct, and what remains of humanity lives on in Australia, alone. Artificial oxygen is a commodity, though its success is short-lived as thousands succumb "The Sickness," a biological rejection of the synthetic oxygen.
I have to say that I enjoyed this film. Its story, despite resolving the fate of mankind, is small, focused almost entirely on Ethan Whyte (Kodi Smit-McPhee, X-MEN: DARK PHOENIX) and his plucked-from-obscurity role as Humanity's Last Great Hope. He is aided his best-friend/brother-from-another-mother Jude (Ryan Kwanten, HBO's "True Blood") with whom he shares an inspired friendship, though one tested by the unknown of future worlds and time-entangled mysteries. There are issues of legacy, true altruism, and love as a theme both universal and personal. To me, however, the real power of the film is in the little things, which come about by asking big questions.
Writer/Director Seth Larney (TOMBIRUO) asks real questions about time travel: how much energy would it require? How does one reckon not only to when they are traveling but where? How foreign will our own planet look to us 4oo years from now, or maybe even 47? If oxygen does become a necessary monetized commodity, how will it be vended, and will it even work?
The film opens with impressive visuals, reminiscent of BLADE RUNNER, of a world torn asunder by corporate greed and hubris. We're introduced to Ethan (or as I like to call him: Australian Jay Baruchel) working in the tunnels below the city to keep the power running safely and picking up as many shifts as he can to pay for treatments for his dying wife, Xanthe (Sana'a Shaik, NOMAD), who suffers from The Sickness associated with the synthetic oxygen. His existence seems largely utilitarian, with only brief smiles enjoyed with Xanthe and his friend Jude. Soon Australian Jay Baruchel is called up to meet the big boss at his firm, Jackson (Deborah Mailman, RABBIT PROOF FENCE), whom I refer to as Australian Mindy Kaling. Australian Mindy Kaling reveals that Australian Jay Baruchel's father had built the firm a time machine, and the first time they sent a ping through it to see if any humans were alive in the future, they received a response:
"SEND ETHAN WHYTE"
So, as is the case with film, when destiny calls, one must answer. Ethan is shot 400 years into the future into a world he can barely recognize, with only a Google Assistant as his guide. What he discovers there is the meat of the film, and I'm not going to deny you the pleasure of devouring it by telling you how it tastes.
If you're thinking a post-apocalyptic film is the last thing you need in 2020, I would posit that this film's strength is its message of hope. That most enduring human trait that sees us through the bleakest of times, and keeps our eyes set on what light is still to be found even as we stare into the darkness. Ethan's reluctancy to be the savior of the world is largely relatable, and his eventual response to the call of destiny awakens that latent hero within us.
2067 is out today in select theaters as well as on demand and digital formats.
Until next time, stay safe and stay sane, and keep on looking for that light in the darkness.
-McEric, aka Eric McClanahan-