Director: Robert Holz
Starring: Andrea Mohylová, Adam Vacula, Václav Neužil, Karel Dobrý, Agáta Kryštůfková
Set in 2041, Robert Holz’s Restore Point sees our world in near social and economic ruin as inequality runs rife. However, at this time, a major scientific breakthrough allows for victims of violent crimes to be brought back from the literal dead - assuming they successfully backed up their brain data every forty-eight hours (and we think our data is being harvested…)
For Em (Mohylová), a young, determined detective, any moral or ethical issues are put to one side when it comes to work, and her next case involves solving the murder of a couple who died suspiciously but she receives a major boost when one of the victims is resurrected by the restoration team - but all is not as it seems.
"Restore Point never threatened to burst into fifth gear and become something it never intended to be, but the atmosphere rarely felt foreboding or overly tense, despite the mystery being appealing."
A dystopian sci-fi thriller set in Prague, Holz decided to undertake an ambitious project for his feature directorial debut. Restore Point boasts an extremely interesting premise that throws up many quandaries to consider - positive and negative - however, the overall execution didn’t quite match up to its promise. Far from being a bad sci-fi movie, Restore Point is simply a decent one in almost every aspect. The performances across the board are solid, however, the characters themselves lack not just a spark or any life (no pun intended), but also an earnestness or appeal that Ryan Gosling’s K had in Blade Runner 2049 (a performance some considered to be flat also - but not me). There was a rather one-note feeling to the assembled cast, despite Mohylová’s best efforts.
The story and pacing also felt lumbering at times. Now, Restore Point never threatened to burst into fifth gear and become something it never intended to be, but the atmosphere rarely felt foreboding or overly tense, despite the mystery being appealing. Couple that with the mainly muted visuals and the film felt like it was holding me at arms reach throughout - never allowing me closer by way of alluring visuals or a captivating narrative.
As a debut feature, Restore Point acts as a solid springboard for Holz’s talents to flourish in subsequent films, everything is created and presented competently, however, the fulfillment of its initial promise isn’t fully realised. It’s solid without ever really being satisfying.
July 25th 2023