found drama

get oblique

one point oh…

by Rob Friesel

Seen titled as “Paranoia:1.0” on Amazon and “One Point O” on IMDB, this film starring Jeremy Sisto (whom you may recall as Billy from “6 Feet Under”) had at one point oh so much potential. Gentle reader, I recommend you go see it so that you may return here and comment on it. It was << this >> close to being great. I just think the screenwriter and director got in to a blood feud or something.

SPOILER WARNING!!!

So the film’s biggest problems are mainly in the cliche department and the unrealized plot elements department. First: cliches people! Directors doing gritty near-future dramas and thrillers seem to have this fetish for grainy brown film. Which wouldn’t be so bad if they then did not take their hacker/programmer protagonist and drop him in the middle of dump of an apartment and hook him up with weird, insatiable addictions. I suppose we have Gibson’s Case to thank for setting the standard but must they also program in hex? Is this a cinematic device meant to frustrate coders? /sigh

Second: unrealized plot elements. At 92 minutes, I felt like they had wiggle room to finish fleshing out a few components of this story. Seriously, the one neighbor goes from being “just a dick” to some genius pioneer in interactive porn to dead in the span of about 15 minutes. And the other neighbor’s AI “head” Adam — well he just phased out as quickly as he phased in. And there I was thinking he would be — well… — central!

Meanwhile, while the porn pioneer and the AI head go under-represented and largely unrealized, we’re fed a mound of (back to the cliches…) shit about nanotech used for (literally) viral marketing. Very dystopian and normally I’d be totally on board for that if everything else that coulda/woulda/shoulda tied in to it then actually did tie in to it.

I’m grateful that the romantic sub-plot took the turn it did w/ the “I don’t love you” comments. At least that meshed in well with the story arc.

To its credit, there were some neat shots and powerful images. Like the screenwriter and cinematographer were secretly conspiring to succeed despite the directors’ naive approach. Or maybe it was just the cinematographer.

currently playing: Muse “Sunburn” (Timo Maas Sunstroke remix)

About Rob Friesel

Software engineer by day, science fiction writer by night; weekend homebrewer. Author of The PhantomJS Cookbook and a short story in Please Do Not Remove. View all posts by Rob Friesel →

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