Film review: Dante 01

May 18, 2009 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Film reviews 

dante01affIn theory, all the ingredients that should make Dante 01 an effective science fiction / horror hybrid are present; but theory is very different from execution…

Director Marc Caro was one half of the innovative team behind the dark adult fairytales Delicatessen and The City of Lost Children; and his input to that successful collaboration is shown here as he runs solo for the first time: the claustrophobic steely cold environment, the lumbering spacesuits a la Sunshine; the shadowy ship, much like the Event Horizon.

The crucifix-shaped Space Station Dante 01 is a medical experiment; criminally-insane prisoners avoid the death penalty by agreeing to undergo drug trials and observation by a skeleton crew of scientists and security wardens. This uneasy arrangement is rocked when a new and unspeaking inmate, (Lambert Wilson, who played The Merovingian in The Matrix films), arrives under the care of a beautiful scientist, Elisa, who is under orders to test a new nanotechnology-based drug. The new prisoner, nicknamed Saint George, is apparently the sole survivor of an event that wiped out his crew and left him with the gift/curse of seeing inside people’s bodies. As Eliza’s drug kills the inmates, Saint George brings them back to life, seizing hold of the nano-tech virus and eating the infection, healing more than just the drug-induced illness. The prisoners and remaining staff must race against time to save themselves from the self-destructing ship and the determined Elisa.

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