Lys – Siff 2011 Movie Review

Lys [ Germany (German), 2010, 52 minutes ]
Director: Krystof Zlatnik
Principal Cast: Hanna Schwamborn, Horst-Günter Marx, Marc Hosemann, Catherine Bode Ecki Hoffmann
See it: June 10, 11 at SIFF

Lys is a typical German teenager whose life is knocked dramatically off-course when she finds herself in the reactor room of the new power plant when it malfunctions. She doesn’t know why she is there, and though there is no proof, the scientists at the plant believe she had something to do with the malfunction. As Lys starts to discover strange new powers, she also has an unexplained urge drawing her back to the power plant, which continues to malfunction and cause city-wide blackouts. Is Lys the root cause of these problems or the solution the power plant scientists are searching for?

Overall Entertainment / Enjoyment: A
I really enjoyed this movie! Even though it was short (only 52 minutes), I felt that it had a good basic plot with characters I could understand and root for. I can definitely see where a little more character development could have been added, but I didn’t feel like it was lacking or missing anything, and I felt very satisfied at the end. I really enjoyed the vibrance of the colors / cinematography and the limited special effects were appropriate and well done.

Film Festivalness: A-
I suppose I do expect somewhat longer films (or much shorter “short films”) at a festival, so this one is a little hard to categorize in that sense. But it was overall well done, the story was tight and kept my interest, and the subtitles were pretty spot on (which seems to be the exception rather than the rule lately). The film had an interesting plot and though the characters may have been slightly underdeveloped, they were still convincing and enjoyable to watch.

Siff Provided Synopsis
Following a massive blackout, 15-year-old Lys Marjan is found inside the core of the TERRA-Power Plant, a new reactor able to provide clean, emission-free electricity by drawing upon the Earth’s Anima energy. Unable to remember how she got there, Lys returns home with her parents, while scientist Karl Bardel, the chief architect behind the reactor, investigates the possible connection between her and the incident. At home, Lys is plagued by recurring dreams urging her to return to the reactor. Meanwhile, in her absence, further strange occurrences plague the reactor, as the Anima energy grows unstable. It soon becomes clear that Lys possesses a special affinity for Anima, one Bardel hopes will be able to stabilize the reactor before it reaches critical mass. With the mainstream rise of environmentalism, the emerging sub-genre of ecological science fiction adds a relevant, frighteningly possible aspect to the traditional apocalyptic narrative. In his debut feature, director Krystof Zlatnik crafts an exquisite cautionary parable in which even the greenest technologies may have disastrous unintended consequences.



Provided Film Synopsis

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