Review: A Life in Technicolor

Written and directed by Alex Ramirez, a lifelong film lover (Josey Porras) stuck in her apartment during COVID-19 recreates the movies she idolizes as a mysterious force outside threatens to drain her world of colour, sound, and life.

A lot of films have come along since the pandemic began, chronicling and sympathising with the intense, lonely experience of lockdowns but where many of them end up serving as a bitter reminder, Alex Ramirez creates something sweet and hopeful. It’s a wonderful change of pace and the reason for that is where Ramirez puts the focus of his story. Instead of trying to overtly push the isolation, it focuses on how its protagonist deals with it. It tells a tale of escapism and how there’s a film to fit every mood. Its entire story is a homage to classic film and the comfort that it can provide. As well as dipping into how that can turn to inspiration and elevate your appreciation for the outside world, when you can finally be in it again.

Right from the very first frames there’s a playful, easy-going and upbeat atmosphere to A Life in Technicolor. It’s a lovely air of positivity and creativity, which is then enhanced by the fact that it simultaneously recognises its film lover’s struggle and sadness. That isolated side is acknowledged but never pushes the film’s overall tone off balance, it holds onto that appreciative and joyful feel. There are those who don’t appreciate classic film (and are missing out) but those who do, will immediately get that satisfying warmth which comes from old Hollywood, the theatricality, detailed costuming and imposing sets. On top of which, there’s some great and clever angle and framing choices from Alex Ramirez. It takes that love of film and translates it into its camera movement, as well as using a fantastic mix of different genres with its film footage.

Josey Porras provides the singular performance of A Life in Technicolor, other than a brief appearance from Cassidy Fritts in its ending, and she does a superb job. There’s no tangible dialogue, she’s adrift on a film journey and embraces each different film as it comes along. In doing so she creates a hugely bubbly and fun personality. Her enthusiasm is infectious, taking film lover to the next level with the themed outfits and scene recreations, and for anyone who similarly loves film, it’s very entertaining to watch.

A Life in Technicolor is a loving homage to classic cinema and how the right film can always improve any mood. Josey Porras encapsulates all of that appreciation and enthusiasm with her extremely enjoyable, lively and sweet performance. Alex Ramirez brings lockdown into the story without it becoming an unpleasant reminder of the collective struggle of isolation, instead it’s a channel into a cheerful exploration of film. His direction then takes things to another level with a satisfyingly smart using of framing and angles to truly add a cinephile touch to the film.

Verdict: ✯✯✯✯ | 8/10

Screening at the Luminaria Contemporary Arts Festival on November 19 | For more info click here

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