Climate change catastrophe thriller that fades

Blake returns to a washed out Earth to see if life can reproduce there
Nora Arnezeder, as Blake, returns to Earth to see if life can reproduce there.

The Colony
Directed and co-written by Tim Fehlbaum
Starring Nora Arnezeder, Iain Glen, Sarah-Sofie Boussnina, and Joel Basman
In cinemas

The opening few moments of The Colony firmly establish the film in the emerging cinematic genre of climate change catastrophe.

We are told that devastation has overtaken Earth. The rich have evacuated the planet for a distant replacement.

Unfortunately for them, the environment there rendered them all infertile so they can’t procreate. Personally, I can’t think of a better outcome than that they should all die out, but that would not make for a very suspenseful movie.

Chasing the possibility of producing children, the rich send expeditions back to Earth looking for signs of life. The film opens dramatically as the second such expedition literally crashes into the ocean.

Perhaps the first third of The Colony contains enough tension and plot twists to maintain interest. Unfortunately, the plot quickly resolves into a rather colour-by-numbers thriller, lacking enough complexities to hold much interest.

It is a pity, because a lot of creativity went into the art direction and the movie’s general look and feel. The multinational cast is first rate and the choice to spare us CGI is welcome.

In some markets this film carries the name The Tides, which is a better fit. Huge tidal movements are central to the plot but not the dialogue, which makes for a bit of confusion.

I long for a climate change movie that, instead of showing a bleak wasteland as our future, depicts a glowing, ecologically-sustainable one, created by fundamental social change.

[Watch the trailer here.]