Powered by Blogger.

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Review: Division 19

Director: S.A. Halewood
Screenplay: S.A. Halewood
Year: 2019

Synopsis: It is the year 2039. Jails have become online portals where the public can choose what prisoners wear, eat, watch, and against who they fight. In an unexpected turn, Hardin Jones gets out of the system in which he is the star, just to find himself monitored by the cameras around the city and followed by the group of people that manage this system and that are not willing to lose their biggest attraction.

“Division 19” takes place in a not so distant dystopian future, where inmates have been turned into entertainment for society. Hardin Jones, interpreted by Jamie Draven (“Badland”), has turned into a star while the public decides many aspects about their daily life and the big corporations use him as a way to advertise their products. A group of people who do not agree with the control imposed over society decides to go against this system and take Hardin out of jail while they take over the digital system to achieve their socio-political goals.

Once out of jail we start to know Hardin. Hardin is a very reserved man with some lack of charisma, which made it difficult for me to get interested in this character. In the story, Hardin is the public’s favorite inmate, but the way this character is presented and developed does not represent his popularity. More than an acting problem, to me it was a screenplay problem, as Draven does a good job in his interpretation, but his character needed more depth and charisma.

Since the first scenes, we see that a frenetic editing style is used that causes a lot of confusion in the viewer. Accompanied by a screenplay that is hard to follow, this movie is sure to keep you thinking, even when it is to try and figure out what is happening. In some parts, there are up to three stories running simultaneously and it seems like there is no harmony between them and it requires from a major effort from the viewer to keep up with the line of events. If you manage to get over this problem and get interested in the socio-political critique about how the digital world is currently moving and what it can become, this movie can be very interesting.

The best thing about “Division 19” is the idea it tries to portray in its plot. A dystopic future in which everyone is being watched and where jails have become a business is an interesting idea. The problem with this movie is the execution. I tried to get into the plot, but the editing decisions, the sudden changes in stories and contradiction to what the plot establishes since the beginning made it challenging for me to do so. It is a shame because the cast does a good job and the movie is shot in a way that it seems like it has a larger budget than its tight $2 million.

Division 19 will hit theatres and video-on-demand platforms on April 5, 2019.

No comments:

Post a Comment