Director – Rupert Jones (Beehive, Sir Gadabout)
Starring – Toby Jones (Doctor Who, Captain America: The Winter Soldier), Anne Reid (Hot Fuzz, Doctor Who), and Sinead Matthews (Pirate Radio, Black Mirror)
Release Date – 2016
Rating – 3/5
IFC Midnight is known for releasing some pretty solid horror and thriller flicks over the years and their partnership with Scream Factory has seen some unforgettable releases. Sadly, There has been a few releases from this team up that just missed their mark. I recently reviewed their release The Midnight Man and it was a very lackluster film that underutilized two screen legends Robert Englund and Lin Shaye.
The next film in my crosshairs from IFC Midnight and Scream Factory is the 2016 British horror thriller Kaleidoscope starring Toby Jones who has made appearances in Doctor Who and several summer blockbusters like Captain America: The Winter Soldier but he is commonly known for playing the house elf Dobby in the Harry Potter series. I was weary about tossing this one in but I’m glad I did and I want to thank the fine folks over at Scream Factory for sending this one my way.
**Spoiler Alert**The film follows Carl (Jones) who awakens to start his day but finds a lipstick smear on one of his glasses. This sends him on a search to discover what happened the night before when he met a woman online and they met for the first time. After he discovers her dead boy in the bathroom a dark decent into a strange relationship between Carl and his mother unravels revealing something dark inside of him.**Spoiler Alert**
I went into Kaleidoscope with hesitation but I’m glad I gave it a chance. It was not the most original film but it did feature a great cast and the story was just intriguing enough to hold my attention.
The acting in this one is superb. Toby Jones is the whole fucking show in this one. He goes through a wide range of emotions in this film and the viewer can’t help but feel them through the screen. He does a fantastic job and turns a would be stale character into the highlight of the film. His character is very Norman Bates like but he is able to pass it off as an enjoyable character. The supporting cast does a fantastic job as well which is the real saving grace for this film.
The story for this one is Psycho but with more of a psychological spin which didn’t make the film any more enjoyable. The story for this one is very bland for the most part but character driven which is why the film is so enjoyable. The cast does a great job at keeping the viewer involved. Finally, if you are looking for a bloody horror film you wont find it here. Instead, the film pulls in the horror from the story and the tense atmosphere.
Overall, Kaleidoscope would be a lackluster horror thriller but is saved from the dollar bin at Wal-Mart by superb performances from Toby Jones and the supporting cast. It may not be that original but it is enjoyable so check it out.