Film Review : Kill Switch (2017)

A pilot battles to save his family and the planet after an experiment for unlimited energy goes wrong.

Genre : SF
Country : Netherlands/USA

Cast :
Dan Stevens : Will Porter
Bérénice Marlohe : Abigail Vos
Kasper van Groesen : Donny

Director :
Tim Smit

My opinion of “Kill Switch”

“This is Will Porter.
Mission log three.
I can now confirm that the jump was successful.
My location is the echo.”

In a future world, the multinational Alterplex designed an everlasting energy source. Thanks to the M-theory and the duplicate-matter theory, they’ve succeeded in creating a parallel universe. Believe me, the whole theory will be explained a bit in the film. Not that I understood much of it. Eagerly they use scientific terms such as space dimensions, quantum particles and gravity portals. The only difference between our universe and the duplicate one, is that there are no organic compounds present. It’s actually a huge lifeless battery. And our modern society can gain energy from it endlessly. A necessity since the energy consumption on our planet has risen phenomenally.

Kill Switch

Is this agreement a poisoned gift?

Will Porter (Dan “The Ticket” Stevens), a physicist who used to work for NASA, is being recruited by Alterplex as a solution in case of a problem. If an instability is detected, he’ll be transported to the parallel universe, where he has to place a cube-shaped object in the duplicated tower. Alterplex does everything to get him on board. Even relocating his sister (Charity Wakefield) and her son Donny (Kasper van Groesen) won’t be a problem. Included in the agreement is also medical treatment for Donny. So, it’s an offer Will can’t refuse. Even though he initially has no idea what to expect.

Want to change your life? Buy that ticket!

Apparently, his training wasn’t thorough enough, because the moment he goes through that portal into this other universe, he doesn’t know what is going on most of the time. Even the message “Redivider” on the cube doesn’t mean anything to him. Dan Stevens actually runs around the whole movie pretty confused and helpless, meanwhile wondering why there’s still human life present and why all kind of objects are falling from the sky (in the real world those objects disappeared without a trace). He even claims at one point that he’s not a copied version of himself. I didn’t think that was quite logical.

It’s like watching a PS4 game

The story isn’t so impressive. It’s the FPS (First-person shooter) perspective that gets the most attention. But gradually it got more on my nerves as the story progressed. Maybe PS4 fans are excited about this, but I still don’t believe in this concept. The same thing has been used in “Let’s be evil” and “Jerusalem” and wasn’t really appreciated by yours truly. If I feel like playing an FPS, I’ll plug in my PS4. At least I’ll be in control when it’s about the course of the story.

So expect back and forth swirling images, with all kind of statuses popping up on the display. Also Dan’s monologues seem to be stuffed with the same recurring calls all the time. He’ll be shouting continously “Oh my God”, “What’s the hell is this”, “Lets go!”, “Come on” and “Run!” Run! Run! “. And he’s running a lot of miles, trust me. I’m sure there’s less running in “Chariots of fire“, than in this movie.

Again based on a You Tube hype?

The acting isn’t so overwhelming either. Dan Stevens wasn’t very long on the set I guess, since you don’t see him so much in the movie. And the moment he appears, you’ll see that amazed and questioning look mostly. Bérénice Marlohe generally tried to use her most photogenic part of her face (her deeply cut decolleté on the other hand demanded the most attention at the beginning). And most likely an over-enthusiastic employee from the make-up department was assigned to her (the amount of used mascara is living proof of that).

Nothing positive about this movie? Yes there is. I was quite impressed by the used SE’s. No, they aren’t comparable to the extremely expensive SE’s of “Star Wars” or “Avatar” (you won’t be blown away this time) and sometimes the images clearly look computerized. But still, the images weren’t bad. And the used location was a surprise. It all takes place in Amsterdam. “Kill Switch” has the same shortcoming as “Lights out“.

Both movies are preceded by a shorter version on “You Tube” and was a hype there. In both cases, the result is a film with a strong concept but it feels as if they did the utmost to stretch the short story as long as possible. So after trying to make a movie based on a PC game or a book, it may be wise not to use a “YouTube” hype as base for a feature film as well.

My rating 5/10
Links : IMDB