Directed by: Dana Ziyasheva
Written by: Dana Ziyasheva
Starring: Arman Darbo, Chloe Ray Warmoth, Nick Moran, Eric Roberts
So many films have been made that depict life in different worlds. These worlds can be slightly different from the ones we live in, or completely different.
Greatland is a Sci-Fi adventure which takes place in a world that is quite unique: people wear clothing that is unusual and colorful! The houses and buildings are decorated in a similar fashion, with beautiful, bright colors! People behave rather awkwardly and are constantly cheerful! Everyone also wears a wristwatch with a screen, which is how ''Mother'' (an automatic voice application) communicates with individuals. ''Mother'' is the one that everyone obeys. If anyone does not comply with the system, they are punished. The main belief is that love conquers all. Generally it is a place that appears happy, with no major problems.
The main character is Ulysses (Darbo), a boy who has just turned fifteen. He means well, seems content and interacts well with others. However circumstances make him brake the laws and become a fugitive!
What stands out more in this movie is the way the characters and their surroundings look. As mentioned the people are dressed...strangely. Their clothes and make-up give the impression that they are attending a fancy dress party! And the buildings (both interiors and exteriors) resemble the kind that would be found at amusement parks! In other words, the whole place looks like a massive dollhouse! The mise-en-scene truly makes the audience believe that this is a jolly, care-free place.
Another thing that stands out the way the habitants of this extraordinary land behave. They have been raised to follow the beliefs and laws that were established by the ones in charge, and as a result, they behave almost like children! And the actors do a good job in showing that, although at certain points the performances are not very convincing.
The music effectively accompanies the childish, circuslike world. It sounds like it is coming from a carnival, adding an awkward, unserious atmosphere.
The filmmakers do an interesting job with the editing, creating several montage sequences and utilizing fast cutting to great effect. And the animated and stylized closing credits also deserve praise.
The story can be dramatic at times and it should be mentioned that there are scenes of violence and gore!
To conclude, the film does a good job introducing the viewer to its unique world, however after that it goes downhill. The narrative is not very enthusiastic and the main characters are not compelling. However, it does deserve recognition due to the settings, costumes and the world it presents.