Finally Netflix has brought out a high end original film to go alongside some of its excellent original tv series (Jessica Jones being my favourite). After the meh to boring such as Cloverfield Paradox and Bright, I hope Neflix has finally cracked the movie formula. To get Natalie Portman and Oscar Isaac on board must have been massive coups. Hopefully they will see sense to splash the cash on guys like this in the future rather than giving Adam Sandler free reign to make endless low brow, low quality trash.
So whoever (whomever??) did the cinematography for this film deserves a round of applause and all the credit they can get. Wait, let me check who it was....
....it was Rob Hardy- who also worked on Ex Machina which also starred Oscar Isaac (Poe from new Star Wars series). Maybe he just knows how to light that guy's face ever so well.
Anyway, the look of this film was up there with Bladerunner 2049. It was as though everything within the "the shimmer" was shot through a bubble- you know, when you get that bent rainbow of colours around the edges.
I felt that this film was like a blending of Robin William's What Dreams May Come, Evolution (from 2001) and bizarrely also the new Blair Witch. Granted, not three films you may ever categorise together but if you've seen them too I'd like to think you'll see where I'm coming from with this.
I think what stops this film being really great is that given the premise I think more could have been shown of the animal mutations in the shimmer world. We see a lot of the plants, but they seem only to give the scientists a chance to narrate to the audience what is happening. I say this mainly because the the screaming mutated bear creature was so well done creepy-wise and really gets under your skin, if they had explored that with what one or two more similar creatures could do I think we would have gotten more from it.
Also the flashback subplot seemed a bit unnecessary.
In summary, a very good watch if you have a Netflix subscription. A solid 3.5/5.