With a title like Monochrome: The Chromism (2019) I was expecting a silly action or sci-fi romp, however, writer/director Kodi Zene’s dystopian thriller is a serious attempt at a movie, having social commentary on otherism and mob rule. The styling of the characters, sometimes in tattered and face-covered clothing, and the scenes of desolate, windswept deserts outside of the city made for a nice post-apocalyptic aesthetic, however, overall, the film fails to be immersive and only just misses the mark at going as deep, dark, and epic as Zene intended.

The film follows Issac (Joshua Bangle), a seemingly normal cog-in-the-wheel of society. On the day that he is to propose to his girlfriend, Isaac is shot and rushed to the hospital. As the doctors discover his blood is red when everything in their world is only black and white, they decide to quarantine him as patient zero, foreseeing a potential for this color to spread. Soon, people once in black and white become pigmented and labeled “hues”, and people are encouraged to hunt them down in order to round them up together in one place. Isaac must struggle against a city out to get him and his kind, all while society begins to crumble at talks of bio-terrorism and warfare.

Monochrome┬áhas an interesting premise, one that uses a viral event as the catalyst for revealing the true villain — humans motivated by fear. Likewise in The Mist (2007) or The Invasion (2007), Monochrome does an excellent job of portraying mob rule and fear of the unknown. Shot in black and white, the movie’s mildly choreographed action sequences were still effectively exciting. Zene inverts the meaning of color in this film, making the real world in black and white and any show of color be a symbol of societal aversion and apprehension. Monochrome: The Chromism can be summarized as a cross between Pleasantville (1998) and Carriers (2009), except with amateur acting and a significantly less comprehensive storyline.

The main downfall of this movie is the amount of unanswered questions it leaves in its wake — unfortunately, it habitually presents plot points that don’t lead to anywhere. I felt that Monochrome could have had an ending with some semblance of a resolution, instead, it ended rather abruptly in order to have the story left open for a possible sequel. The cold opening alluded that there would be some call back to it for the finale, but since that call went unanswered, it seemed to be a rather pointless part to the movie, which is a shame, because the cold opening was the most memorable.

People with masks on are the norm in real life and are also quickly becoming the norm in film, as 2020 has seen an influx in virus movies — Monochrome falls in line with this trend, basing its premise on the breakdown of society following a viral outbreak, and having its cast of characters donning face masks whilst running down anyone who looks different from them. Luckily we are not yet running down people who sneeze or cough and turning them into the hospital or local authority, but if we do get to that point, then Monochrome: The Chromism should be good mental preparation for post-apocalyptic society living.

 

5.5 out of 10

 

Monochrome: The Chromism
Rating: NR
Runtime: 1 Hr. 13 Mins.
Directed By:
Written By: