Solis (2018) (a film review by Mark R. Leeper).

Talk about your bad mornings after. Asteroid miner Troy Holloway wakes up one day and finds his living quarters are almost too hot to be used and it is getting hotter. It seems he has survived an accident of some kind, but worse is to come. Much worse. He is actually in an escape capsule, but one he cannot control and he is drifting directly into the sun.

He will burn or broil unless he can find a way to turn the path of his flight. His only connection to his people is Control, a voice he talks to on a bad radio connection. The film is really in need of better sound editing.

Directed by: Carl Strathie; Written by: Carl Strathie. Rating: +1 (-4 to +4) or 6/10.

The viewer, who might better be called “the listener”, can follow along with the story only by listening to the voices of Troy Holloway (played by Steven Ogg) and Commander Roberts (never seen but who represents Control) and seeing what Troy does with or against Control’s orders.

Solis (2018) (a film review by Mark R. Leeper).
Solis (2018) (a film review by Mark R. Leeper).

Their conversation tells you about the two people and about what is happening in the pod. Take away their communications and all that is left is a large pile of special effects. But taking away the conversation is exactly what the sound mixer does. You hear Troy say something indistinct and Roberts says something muddled and then you see some sort of fiery images as a special effect. I suspect that much of the audience will be left with a lot of special effects and with not much of a coherent story.

I cannot speak for the whole audience, but I was one of those left with special effects for much of the film. The special effects are generally simple and inexpensive, but they get the job done sufficiently. This film is a throwback to the days when not much effects work was needed. To get the full effect of the visuals, this film shows a lot of scenes washed in red,  the primary colour through most of the film. There appeared to me to be one problem.

There should have been more solar flares and prominences. The film has little pieces of homage to films not very old yet. Thu film shows only one person ever on screen, much like the claustrophobic film ‘Locke’. The film might be even better compared with ‘Gravity’ with its one person trying to save his life.

The treating of the problem as a scientific question is not unlike what we saw in ‘The Martian’. Mr. Ogg does seem to have one thing in common with the old steel-jawed heroes of Science Fiction film heroes of the past. Neither seems to break a sweat. The film would probably be much better if the sound mixer made the dialog easier to understand.

I rate ‘Solis’ a +1 on the -4 to +4 scale or 6/10.

Release date: will be reaching theaters and VOD on October 26th, 2018.

Mark R. Leeper Copyright 2018 Mark R. Leeper Review: Solis (2018).

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