Set in the labyrinthine underworld of 2054 Paris, the black-and-white thriller in the vein of Blade Runner and Minority Report paints a bold vision of a stark, not-so-distant future where all life is monitored, recorded and regulated thanks to the city’s largest corporation, Avalon. Detective Barthelemy Karas, voiced by Daniel Craig (Casino Royale) has a reputation for finding anyone at any cost, but while tracking down a kidnapped scientist, he ultimately finds himself buried beneath Renaissance’s illicit world of corporate malfeasance and soulless genetic research. Critically celebrated actor Ian Holm (Lord of the Rings), Braveheart actress Catherine McCormack and Tony Award®-winner Jonathan Pryce (Pirates of the Caribbean) also voice roles.
Renaissance Main Cast List
Renaissance takes its inspiration from Blade Runner and Sin City. Made by French filmmakers, this stark film is set in a futuristic Paris. Elaborate motion capture of actors and props was then animated into black and white with no shades of gray. As such, the film's visual style is an acquired taste, but while some of the background and scenery is disorienting during some of the action, the characters are each easily discerned. Also, the cityscapes are expansive and beautiful, while clearly paying homage to Blade Runner.
Renaissance makes use of its futuristic setting by working with a blank canvas. It unfolds like a mystery as facets of the lead characters are slowly peeled away. They are mostly stereotypical, but the writing handles their development well. The film closes out with several twists, some of which are fairly obvious, but a couple are not. Being a French film, there are some aspects of the plot that break with the established rules of Hollywood films.
The film is worth watching for any science fiction fan. Worth noting is that the film has been voiced in English for its American release.
The DVD includes one featurette, which is detailed in explaining the film's origins and production. The featurette is in French, but has English subtitles.