A scifi account by virtue of its environment, but an extinct-faculty movie noir at heart which capability that of its narrative, Still is a puzzle with eccentric pieces that sooner or later all match collectively—most doubtless a bit too neatly, given its fondness for jagged edges. Nonetheless its love of sleazy neon and some odd subject issues contain noteworthy to impress up for its contrivances.
Duncan Jones’ newest is determined in the same universe as his 2009 debut, Moon, forward of an as-but-unnamed zero.33 movie in his planned trilogy. The films contain a loose connection that we won’t ruin here, nonetheless it’s no longer a giveaway to claim that Still takes insist correct after the events of Moon—so, one day quickly after 2035. Nonetheless it absolutely begins 30 years earlier, at the scene of a boating accident that leaves a boy named Leo half-drowned and fully silent. That transient 2d fashions up correct about the entirety we want to know about Leo in the movie’s demonstrate (where he’s performed by Alexander Skarsgård). Additionally—told you there were some odd subject issues—he’s Amish.
Though he’s no longer fully devout, he’s serene the most lo-fi particular person in Still’s futuristic model of Berlin; it’s a grimy insist, fat of tawdry bars, brothels, faux-American diners, and tech that’s reputedly feeble fully for instantaneous gratification. Leo, who flexes his Amish woodworking talents in his spare time, is surely the odd man out. Granted, he’d already be odd which capability that of he can’t discuss, but being freakin’ Amish correct united states of americathe ante. That, and the reality that he appears the good particular person in the city who’s motivated by the purest of causes: Faithful love.
Leo is an earnest man in a unsuitable city, and since this is a noir account, the object of his affections goes lacking early on. His wordless stamp for his preferred, a blue-haired beauty named Naadirah (Seyneb Saleh)—obviously, he carries an proper photograph of her spherical, being stubbornly extinct-fashioned—leads him into some sad places, although he’s no longer a complete outsider in that world. Leo and Naadirah meet while working at a shifty nightclub called Foreign Dreams, a insist where, obviously, Berlin’s international transplants mingle and rob in alternative sad-market actions alongside robotic tear-tear dancers.
That said, a boring extinct espresso shop is where Leo first crosses paths with Cactus Bill (Paul Rudd), one other American expat who’s on his have desperate quest. It’s a reputedly random encounter that echoes at some level of the comfort of the narrative at louder and louder frequencies.
Cactus, serious about cigars and loud Aloha shirts, is a surgeon and gentle protection power man who served in the Center East with Duck (Justin Theroux), a fellow doctor who now has a obedient follow crafting bionic physique components. That said, he’s contented to succor his most attention-grabbing buddy mend bullet-riddled gangsters in an underground sanatorium, a gig Cactus has most attention-grabbing taken which capability that of he’s enthusiastic to discover the cash and crucial documents to hover the nation. (To illustrate why would be announcing too noteworthy.) The dynamic of Cactus and Duck’s friendship is one amongst the most unearthly issues about Still, nonetheless it makes a uncommon form of sense. They changed into chums below outrageous conditions, and although they can even fair no longer love every diverse the total time, there’s a bond there that can most doubtless’t be damaged. Additionally, they’re both complete assholes. Straight up.
Cactus and Leo, on the assorted hand, are complete opposites—and the reality that Leo keeps doping up love a unsuitable penny spins the already rage-filled Cactus into an noteworthy extra unhealthy fury. He presents crucial distinction to Skarsgård’s restful character—they’re two tightly coiled men pursuing their very have very explicit, very pressing agendas who otherwise couldn’t be extra diverse in every methodology. Additionally, it ought to be said that while Skarsgård is okay as the lovelorn Leo, seeing the in overall likable Rudd rip into such an irascible and morally flawed character is one amongst Still’s greatest promoting facets. Why is he rocking a 1970s porn ’stache in a futuristic cyberpunk movie? Well, why no longer?
Jones’s narrative for Still—he shares a screenwriting credit rating with Michael Robert Johnson—ends up tilting methodology extra in opposition to movie noir than scifi in the stop. It unfolds on a methodology smaller scale than one thing love Blade Runner 2049, the most excessive-profile newest example of scifi noir. Still feels love a noteworthy extra non-public narrative, putting a runt network of damage-inclined relationships below a microscope and discovering that emotions can even additionally be correct as raw and proper even when the folk feeling them are surrounded by man made flash.
Still is no longer a sufficient movie. Heaps of its quirkier beats stop up fitting too neatly into its conclusion, which would maybe feel a bit compelled once the narrative’s dominoes commence falling over. (The woodworking thing? Yeah, it comes help in a positive methodology.) Nonetheless if Still feels tenuously tied to Moon by methodology of narrative, there’s a deeper connection in that both films take the time to query what makes us in truth human, with out reference to the conditions. Still also supplies a downbeat but relatable vision of the future, with tech that seems eminently plausible (food offer by capability of drone!) as properly as some extra worrisome projections, love the postulate that if truth be told proper folks are most doubtless an endangered species.
Still debuts as of late, February 23, on Netflix.