July 29, 2009

Justify My Netflix: Renaissance

(Like many Netflix customers, I too can get quite lax with the timely watching and returning of my movies, which of course defeats the entire purpose of having a flat-rate rental plan in the first place. To combat that, I am now writing standardized mini-reviews of each and every movie I end up watching through Netflix, both instantly and on DVD. Don't forget, all previous 'Justify My Netflix' reviews can be found on CCLaP's main movie page.)

Renaissance, the movie

Today's movie: Renaissance, 2006 (Amazon | IMDB | Netflix | Wikipedia)

Why I added it to my queue: Because it's one of those fabled scrappy international productions that have become so popular here in the 2000s, a joint experiment in cutting-edge animation among employees in France, the UK, the US and Luxembourg all at once, one of those ultra-sophisticated, notoriously difficult-to-pull-off adult cartoons that literally takes several nations' worth of technology to actually accomplish. And hell, that's all the reason I need to add a movie to my Netflix queue.

The reality: Exactly what one expects from European cutting-edge animation: utterly gorgeous, and utterly freaking incomprehensible. And in response, by the way, to comments I've already gotten over at Facebook regarding the use of this term -- I don't mean "incomprehensible" as in "I had difficulty following along," but rather as in, "What the f-ck kind of storyline is that, you stupid Godard-worshipping Euroweenies?," just this ridiculous potboiler of a plot concerning a Big-Brotheresque corporation in near-future Paris, and a scientist from this corporation who's been kidnapped, and some dude in a suit who's been hired to track her down, blah blah f-ckity blah. But also like I said over at Facebook when putting up my initial thoughts, none of that really matters, because the main reason to watch this in the first place is for the explosive animation; and when it comes to that, your jaw will start dropping from a very early moment while watching this and just remain hanging there, a real visual treat and one of the more astonishing movie-watching experiences I've had in a long time. This is how it's always seemed to be with visually creative cutting-edge projects since the beginning of history, that sophisticated storylines are always sacrificed in their cases for the sake of legitimately pushing the visual envelope, and I guess it's about time I finally just get used to that. It's a movie designed specifically for a global audience, one that relies as little as possible on language and therefore the complexity of its story; and as long as you understand this going into it, you will most likely have a very positive experience watching it yourself. It comes highly recommended within that context.

Worth your time? Yes

Filed by Jason Pettus at 7:39 PM, July 29, 2009. Filed under: Movies | Reviews |