Writer: Rupert Jones (Screenplay)
Starring: Toby Jones, Anne Reid, Sinead Matthews
Plot: A psychological thriller about the destructive relationship between a middle-aged man and his mother.
Runtime: 1 Hour 40 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Verdict: Starts on a High, Falls Downhill Afterwards
Story: Kaleidoscope starts as we meet lonely middle-aged man Carl (Jones) who has been trying to put his life back together after a stint in jail, he goes on a date with Abby (Matthews) which ends in a disturbing way, a way he can’t explain, all this when his controlling mother Aileen (Reid) is planning to visit him. Carl must figure out what is real or what is in his mind before he gets himself into trouble once again.
Thoughts on Kaleidoscope
Characters – Carl is the middle-aged man trying to keep his life together after spending time in jail, we don’t learn what he did to end up there, though he does keep himself to himself, he doesn’t have many belongings and lives in a housing estate. He goes on a date which sees the lady return to his flat, but what happens here is stuck in his head, forgotten and with his mother’s visiting his life becomes to come undone in his mind. Aileen is Carl’s mother that comes to visit, she has had a strange relationship with her son, she wants to rebuild their relationship. Abby is the woman that Carl has a date with, she is bubbly and been through a difficult relationship, she wants Carl to loosen up and enjoy their time together.
Performances – Toby Jones is unsettling through this film, his performance shows us that this single age can become difficult to get through without having problems in your life. Anne Reid brings a disturbing presence to go with her desperate need to rebuild the relationship with her son. Sinead Matthews brings the energy to the film.
Story – The story here follows a middle-aged man trying to put his life back together only for it to come crashing down around him as he needs to figure out what is real or not. This story starts on a high with the discovery in the bathroom, which does drag you into wanting to see how this story unfolds, the problems soon mount up though because the non-linear storytelling makes everything difficult to keep on top of, along with not being able to tell just what is real or not, even with subtle hints, we also focus too heavily on the colours he sees, which being colour blind is hard to pick up certain hints. Th story focuses too heavily on the idea that Carl isn’t right mentally, rather than showing us just how calculated he would need to be.
Thriller – This film does start very impressively, it gives us a mystery as to what happened and makes us want to see how it unfolds, only it just doesn’t reach the heights that are shown early on.
Settings – The film is set in a housing estate which is meant to show how much of a mediocre life Carl is living doing nowhere.
Final Thoughts – This is a thriller that just doesn’t reach the potential it showed, it just seems to drag along without doing anything it promises from the opening sequence.
Overall: Fails to launch.