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‘Coma’ (review)

Produced by Sarik Andreasian, Gewond Andreasian,
Ruben Dischdinjan, Armen Ananikjan,
Raphael Minasbekjan, Nikolai Larionow

Written by Nikita Argunov,
Timofei Dekin, Aleksey Gravitskiy

Directed by Nikita Argunov
Starring Milos Bikovic, Anton Pampushnyy,
Lyubov Novikova, Rinal Mukhametov,
Aleksey Serebryakov, Vilen Babichev,
Albert Kobrovsky, Polina Kuzminskaya

 

An ex-girlfiend of mine and I would have the following exchange a few times a year:

“So, what movie do you want to watch tonight?”

“I want to watch Aliens, but I don’t want to watch Aliens again.”

A conundrum indeed, but there are enough Aliens wannabes in the world that we could usually find something to fill the void.

The new Russian mind-bender Coma could be just the thing for people in a similar situation.

Except Coma goes one better by being a two-fer: it evokes both The Matrix and Inception.

There are pretty overt homages to Inception in its concept and visuals.

A young man wakes up in his apartment, but immediately notices that things aren’t right.

He goes to the fridge, but the food begins to dissolve and disappear.

In the hallway and out on the street, he sees people that are either disintegrating or not fully formed yet.

He notices buildings and streets at right angles or even above him, and gravity appears to work very differently than the real world.

He soon learns that he was in an accident and is now in a coma, along with a handful of others, all of whom are trying to survive in this dream world and stay one step ahead of the ruthless creatures called the Reapers.

The band of ragtag scavengers and survivors evoke the group Neo joins up with in The Matrix (one of them is even named Tank).

There’s also a member that perhaps isn’t as heroic as he seems…

Which isn’t to say the film is a rip-off. It does its own nice job of world-building and creating some characters we want to root for.
There are some interesting revelations along the way and the film is consistently visually striking.

One comment about the screener I received: Coma is apparently available in subtitled and dubbed versions. The version I was given was dubbed.

I was rather surprised, as I honestly can’t remember the last modern release I watched dubbed.

The dubbing actually gave the film a pleasant, throwback feel and while I usually prefer the subtitled version if given a choice, it actually allowed me to focus on the visuals here.

Either way, Coma should fit the bill if you’re hankering for an Inception/Matrix mashup.

 

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