Guy Moshes LX 2048 starts so promisingly but begins to teeter off the edge by the final act. Such a shame as James D’Arcy commands a film that poses interesting questions, without ever truly trying to figure out the answers.
Adam Bird (James D’Arcy) is a father of three in 2048 who works too hard is overly stressed. Why? Because he has figured that he is in a company that is about to be overtaken in the newest tech with board members that will not listen to him. He also has a seemingly fatal condition that could leave his family in financial disrepair. So he endeavours to find a solution.
The idea that in 27 years most of humanity would be living in VR and live practically a lonely existence is not lost in the current climate of lockdowns and solitude. The world-building carried out here is exceptional considering the budget. It feels lived in as if we could expect this and this is one of the strengths of the film. This is possible. The film decides to through a lot of questions to its audience. If we are living in this happy VR world, are we truly happy? Do we need to feel a true human touch to be happy without medication? Can you find and feel the love with virtual beings. There is a world of possibility with the plot and world that it is a shame to limit it to just this one film.
The twists and turns of the movie are best left for the viewer to enjoy, this is due to the importance of them to the film. But an undertone of family drama never leaves us and that is for the better. To keep us grounded in a film that asks and explores worlds of possibilities. If there is no drama with Adam and his family then the film falls away. The tension needs to be ever-present with Adam and Reena to carry the film forward. Thus as we follow their journey, we see both sides, no matter how harsh they may be. One is forever going to be a dreamer, whilst the other is a realist. Their dynamic carries the film and allows the audience to understand the world they are in with the Premium 3 insurance plan and all the other quirks that have been created.
Live in 2048, in this virtual reality world is full of possibilities. People work from home, yet can use VR to be in a conference meeting. There is an entire VR world where you can do everything you used to. The possibilities are truly endless in this world. What LX 2048 does with this VR capabilities that these characters live in is present to us quite possibly the saddest and one of the most memorable sex scenes known to cinema. Not only does this one sex scene happen it is also one of the cruxes to the film. After being caught in the act by Reena, Adam has to explain himself, then a very interesting question is posed to him and the audience.
While some flashbacks are okay for a film that is so dialogue-heavy, but the sheer quantity in LX 2048 gets to the point of distraction. We want to watch what could and should be an interesting conversation between Adam and Donald. Yet we are thrown back into the breakup of Adam and Reena. It is a small thing sure, but being thrown this much just distracts you as an audience, as if a vital scene isn’t worth our full attention.
Production design and art direction by Paulius Seskas, Paulius Jurevicius and Edita Valaite are on another level here. There are some films set in the future that doesn’t quite feel right, they either go too far into the design or too little. Here in LX 2048, they get it just right. The subtle changes to what we should expect in 27 years are what we really should expect. While there are large tubes to allow people to travel, roads and cars are still in use. Suits have small changes, as do several other objects. It is the small touches that make the film work visually.
LX 2048 sadly falters in its last act as it tries to delve and solve questions it just wasn’t set up to answer. It is such as shame as the opening hour does work despite the flashbacks. There is a sense that the film missed an opportunity to have something meaningful to say about the state of technology and our love affair with it. This is done by simply taking the easy route. Which it never needed to take considering all the discussion and thoughts on life and love. A pity as the potential and world-building within LX 2048 is truly massive and is one that many a science fiction fan would love to delve further into.
Dazzler Media presents LX 2048 on Blu-ray, DVD & Digital Download.
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