Florian Gallenberger’s new film The Colony is a nail-biting journey that documents the trials and tribulations of the Chilean public involved in the coup d’état of 1973, and the hardships that many members of the Colonia Dignidad cult brutally endured.
The Colony brims with fervent passion as Lena (Emma Watson) desperately and courageously seeks out her partner Daniel (Daniel Brühl) who has been abducted by the Chilean military, due to his involvement in underground rebellious politics. Forget damsel in distress, here is a story that instead puts Watson in the lead role as the brave and daring heroine who takes risks to rescue her man from the evil clutches of Paul Schäfer’s notorious cult.
Whilst Gallenberger’s film is both poignant and heart-rending, it also lacks a certain amount of coherency in the sense that it bounces back and forth between different genres. Where it works as a romantic drama, it also tries to fit into the structure of a political thriller and whilst the content could fit either mould, in this case the balance is not quite right. Although both moving and intriguing, The Colony can also delve into very deep waters, which slows down the pace dramatically. Due to this, there are times the film feels very slow, and while Gallenberger’s vision is undoubtedly being put across, it would have had more of an impact with a good edit.
This being said, the movie is wonderfully envisioned with perfect casting. Watson and Brühl play the role of the two lovers well and have remarkable chemistry, which glosses over some of the clunkier dialogue. Michael Nyqvist is scarily realistic in his portrayal of the egotistical cult leader, Paul Schäfer, and Richenda Carey is superb as the hard-faced Gisela.
Hard-hitting, intelligent, though somewhat distressing, The Colony is an important film to see this summer.
The Colony is released nationwide on 1st July 2016.
Watch the trailer for The Colony here: