Beyond the Black Rainbow is a dark, glowing walk through a vintage future where paranoia and a new found love for mixing science and technology have merged. A young and beautiful Elena (Eva Allan) lives like a bird trapped inside a brightly lit, fiberglass cage. The cell that she has been kept in her whole life lies somewhere inside the large, space like commune Arobia. Barry Neal (Michael Rogers), the man responsible for holding Elena captive holds close dark secrets that can help Elena understand where she comes from as she tries to escape her unwarranted entrapment.
First, Beyond the Black Rainbow isn’t for everyone the same way 2001: A Space Odyssey or Holy Mountain isn’t for everyone. Even actress Eva Allan told Milk Made “You’ll either love it or hate it”. The fact remains that director Panos Cosmatos gives his audience 110 minutes of stunningly artistic and immensely beautiful shots to escape into as they try to decide whether or not they can travel along with him on this mind-bending journey into the world he has created. The films haunting original score was composed solely on vintage analog synthesizers by Jeremy Schmidt of the band Black Mountain, making the film feel as though it arrived directly from the era it portrays.
This dark love story is not for the “edge-of-your-seat” audience, it’s for the ones that can take a film in slowly and let it bleed into their thoughts for several days later. Beyond the Black Rainbow sits comfortably next to so many cult classics that have influenced artists for centuries like THX 1138, Return to Oz or A Clockwork Orange. This, for many of us, is an introduction to a new director and a new voice in storytelling. It acts as a look into what we should expect from Panos Cosmatos in the future, which, in a world of remakes and sequels and high budget superhero fluff… is exactly what a lot of us have been dying for.
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