• 21 Apr - 27 Apr, 2018
  • Mohammad Kamran Jawaid
  • Reviews

Dubious science is outclassed by a far more dubious story in The Titan – a direct to Netflix release starring Sam Worthington as a Lieutenant who ultimately morphs into a silver-skinned alien.

Worthington, who is set to reprise his role from Avatar, should have known better.

First time director Lennart Ruff, working on Arash Amel’s story and screenplay by Max Hurwitz, wants to tell a somber, low-key science fiction-monster movie in a setting borrowed from Avatar and Interstellar – though, without the space travelling.

In 2048, the world is suffering from war and famine, the planet’s resources nearly depleted. The end is near, warns the head of “The Titan” project – an earnestly downcast good-intentioned scientist played by Tom Wilkinson.

Wilkinson has a simple solution to the overpopulated, nearly dying planet Earth: move its people to Saturn’s moon Titan. The planet is nearly identical to Earth; a Near-Utopia, where we would just have to cope with a toxic, freezing atmosphere filled with Methane.

However, rather than terraform Titan (the process of restructuring the planet to suit human needs), the scientist has a far better solution: re-geneticise us humans to adapt to Titan’s environment.

The process is dangerous, he forewarns. The lot being experimented on may die. So, it’s not really that big of jolt when they start dying, one by one – spitting blood, while their skin, turning a desaturated hue of blue peels off.

Apart from Worthington and his wife played by Taylor Schilling (Orange is the New Black) we don’t get to know any of the other human Guinea pigs being experimented on. The lacking screenplay wants to tell a small engaging story, somewhat similar to Ex Machina. Things don’t really pan out in its favour, despite a somewhat action-ish climax.

Cinematographically, I am quite appalled by these constant string of direct-to-online releases. Frame sizes are awkwardly loose, as if someone straight out of film-school shot the movie. These floppy compositions, restricted to medium and medium-close frames, distracting from the seriousness of The Titan’s story. A tighter screenplay, sleeker runtime, some more ambition, and this could have been far better diversion.