Film (1990). White Noise/Heritage. Directed by Peter Lehner. Written by Lehner, Gordon Chavis. Cast includes Kristen Cloke, Stefan Gierasch, J C Quinn, Daniel J Travanti, Grace Zabriskie and Billy Zane. 95 minutes. Colour.
An impressive but very low-budget picture, updating some of the feel of Jean-Luc Godard's Alphaville (1965) in its vision of a transformed future USA (played oddly but effectively by present-day Switzerland) divided into independent zones. The disguised hero (Zane) is sent from his puritanical homeland, where the electronic Media are outlawed, by a dying "Big Brother" figure (Travanti) into the wide open city of Megaville, where corrupting entertainments like television are still available, to search for a device that enables the user to experience the recorded consciousness of another person. As in Total Recall (1990) the hero is gradually led to question his own identity, in this case coming to wonder whether he is indeed the criminal he is supposed to be impersonating. Megaville is a bleak and cynical film, with a supporting cast of well played sinister characters. [KN]
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