Ink: Doing a Lot With a Little

3 05 2010

I will get around to pontificating on The Matrix Reloaded, but first: I just saw the movie Ink, a low-profile, low-budget, high-concept urban fantasy that showed up in my Netfix recommendations. It’s really good. Mix creepy-as-hell bad guys, a fun assortment of good guys, nightmarish environments, exciting fight scenes, and a sneaky psychodrama; how can you go wrong?

Ink is sort of reminiscent of The Matrix and Nightwatch, mostly in that it creates a highly original, deeply rendered world. The first eighteen minutes really blew me away. It seems strange to call it a low-budget movie, because the effects are every bit as polished and convincing as any Hollywood blockbuster, and the majority of shots involve some element of unreality. Or that’s how it seems anyway. I suspect if (when) I watch the film again, I’ll be surprised at how much of the story is carried simply with actors in real locations. Which is all the more impressive given the sparseness of the dialog.

The film is somewhat overproduced, with excessive color treatments and lightning cuts. Perhaps that helps to camouflage some rough edges around the effects, but I would have preferred a little restraint. And there are times when the acting and the scriptwriting just don’t measure up to the striking nature of the scenario. So it’s not the flawless gem that Moon was. But it is a refreshingly smart and original change of pace.

Bonus for my homies: Ink was filmed in Denver and surroundings, including Lakewood and Aurora. I didn’t recognize any places though. One more reason to watch it again.

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