Review of 'Vesper'

vesper.jpg In a world suffering the ravages of ecological disaster caused by genetic engineering Vesper (Raffiella Chapman) is a young woman taking care of her bed-ridden father Darius (Richard Brake). She is followed around by a floating avatar of her father who offers her guidance but Vesper is more than capable herself as she does her own biological experiments to see if she can cure the planet. The elite live in cities called “citadels” but most, like Vesper, struggle to survive. When a citadel ship crashes nearby Vesper rescues Camellia (Rosy McEwen) who Vesper heals. Camellia promises to take Vesper and her father to one of the citadels but her uncle Jonas (Eddie Marsan), who trades in blood taken from children, has other ideas.

A rather visceral but largely calm and gentle morality film about the dangers of genetic engineering “Vesper” is a bit of a slow burner but worth watching if only to figure out what the heck is actually going on. The effects are quite good and the sticky, icky-ness of the place is all too plain to see. The storyline is quite familiar but it is a bit of a twist with the different forms of life we encounter in this dystopian future.

Chapman delivers an amazing performance as Vesper, an incredibly demanding role both physically and mentally as she must convince us of the reality of this strange world. Veteran actor Eddie Marsan is the baddie, Jonas, who really has not a lot to work with here except be evil and he does it chillingly well while fellow veteran Richard Brake faces a tougher challenge as he has to largely work with eye movements and talking through his avatar. It is Chapman though that really shines.

An interesting, if somewhat TOO slow film that reminds us, again, of the folly of humans playing God. Great looking effects and quite, well, visceral to watch (like gunge and goo? this is the film for you).

Rating: “Nearly perfect, but not quite”

Review Date: 2023-08-20

Directed by: Kristina Buožyt? and Bruno Samper

Studio: Rumble Fish Productions

Year: 2022

Length: 114 minutes

Genre: Science Fiction