Search - Renaissance on DVD

Actors: Daniel Craig, Catherine McCormack, Jonathan Pryce, Romola Garai, Ian Holm
Director: Christian Volckman
Genres: Action & Adventure, Indie & Art House, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Suspense, Animation
R     2007     1hr 45min

RENAISSANCE is a breakthrough sci-fi thriller for a new millennium. Dare to enter a bold vision of the future in the tradition of BLADE RUNNER and SIN CITY - drenched with state-of-the art animation and a gripping story. I...  more »

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Movie Details

Actors: Daniel Craig, Catherine McCormack, Jonathan Pryce, Romola Garai, Ian Holm
Director: Christian Volckman
Creators: Alexis Vonarb, Ariane Payen, Alexandre de La Patellière, Jean-Bernard Pouy, Mathieu Delaporte, Michael Katims, Patrick Raynal
Genres: Action & Adventure, Indie & Art House, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Suspense, Animation
Sub-Genres: Action & Adventure, Indie & Art House, Animation, Futuristic, Mystery & Suspense, Animation
Studio: Miramax
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Closed-captioned,Dubbed,Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 07/24/2007
Original Release Date: 01/01/2006
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2006
Release Year: 2007
Run Time: 1hr 45min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 1
Members Wishing: 0
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Languages: English, French
Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
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Member Movie Reviews

David M. (KingofGarageSales) from FAYETTEVILLE, AR
Reviewed on 3/8/2014...
Maybe this information was given somewhere and I didn't notice it, or its significance didn't register, but this is an ANIMATED film--there are no humans in it (not even any interacting with CGI characters as in "Roger Rabbit")--and when the listing says "black and white" that means NO SHADES OF GREY.

A "black and white" TV show from the '50s was actually a "half-toned" image made of tiny black dots; the shade of grey was determined by how far apart the dots were. Don't expect that kind of "black and white" image here: The figures and background in Renaissance are a jarring stark white clashing with jet black, with no shades of grey to give the perspective of distance or time of day, or distinguish a character's arm from the desk it's resting on. Twenty minutes of it was all I could stand.
2 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
Nina E.
Reviewed on 7/30/2011...
This movie is "Sin City" esq. I'm a huge fan of Daniel Craig, and this movie's not a everyday run of the mill will hold your attention. If you liked Sin City and a fan of Art House...get this you will want to watch this many times...there is a lot going on. It is sexy...has the spy/espionage thrill and is an artistic masterpiece.
0 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
David W. from SCHOFIELD, WI
Reviewed on 10/1/2010...
Wow, this is an animated masterpiece!. Incredibly done in a glorious black and white fashion, simply breathtaking.
0 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
Joseph M. (RoboticJoe) from TOLEDO, OH
Reviewed on 2/16/2010...
Great freaking movie, story, animations and non-animations included. It was very well written and I would reccomend to any cyber-punk nior cult classic (rivethead geek) who loves a rad sci-fiction movie like this.!.!. ~ RoboticJoe
0 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.

Movie Reviews

A Truly Difficult Film To Judge
W. Scott Heitman | Gainesville, Fl United States | 07/24/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Renaissance is one of a very short list of non-japanese adult-oriented (computer) animated films. As such, it wins point from me just for being daring. In our western culture, animation is supposed to be for children.

Add to that the artful restriction of the color palette to just the strictest hues of black and white. Throughout the course of the entire movie, what the audience sees consists entirely of shadows. Combine that with the visual style of a neo-noir future, and you have a stunning film to watch.

On top of beautiful visuals, the film sports a haunting score. Each cue seemed to suggest that yet another mystery would surface around the next corner.

The problem is this: If the film had been shot as a live-action movie, there would be nothing remarkable about it. Daniel Craig feels slightly miscast here, and you've seen the plot a million times. Worse, some of the writing is so bad that it breaks the spell that the visuals are attempting to weave.

I could have given Renaissance three stars to compromise between the beautiful visuals and the mediocre story/writing, but I think that would give the wrong impression. Ultimately, there's some real visual poetry here, and I intend to buy the dvd. Just don't expect a great story to boot."
Visually stunning... so where's the extras?
Cubist | United States | 07/23/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Renaissance is an animated film made in the tradition of Sin City and A Scanner Darkly. Like the former film, it was initially shot with live actors on a green-screen soundstage and then this footage was animated like the latter film. The result is a striking-looking futuristic world in the Cyberpunk mould.

The look of Renaissance is classic Cyberpunk: a fusion of high-technology and the grimy, run-down look of the mean city streets - a mix of Mickey Spillane and science fiction. This is one of those rare animated films made for adults with a style that is reminiscent of Frank Miller's Sin City graphic novels and also looks like it leapt right from the pages of Heavy Metal magazine. The stark use of black and white with no shadings of gray creates a very distinctive look. The attention to detail is also incredible - a vivid, atmospheric world that instantly envelopes you.

Much like the society depicted in Blade Runner, the higher up one goes - both literally and financially - the look becomes cleaner and more futuristic, reflecting the money being spent and the power being wielded, and this is epitomized by sleek, ultra-modern look of Avalon. As Renaissance unspools, the viewer is bombarded with one evocative image after another. For example, a gun battle takes place in a small forest encased in glass on top of a building.

The lone extra is "The Making of Renaissance" examines this French production whose origins lie in a short film made in 1997 that fused animation with live-action footage. The filmmakers picked Paris because so many SF films they admired were set either in New York City or Tokyo and wanted to try something different. This featurette traces the film's development from the screenwriting stage to post-production. Not surprisingly, they cite Blade Runner and the crime novels of James Ellroy as the primary influences."
Blade Runner collides with Metropolis and then collides with
Woopak | Where Dark Asian Knights Dwell | 05/30/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)

"I managed to see the U.K. import and I have to say this animated film has so much potential, although it came up a bit short, it is still better than most of the live-action movies out today.

RENAISSANCE:Paris 2054(Original title) is animated in Black and White, reminiscient of the Frank Miller's Sin City, much of its style is derived from the graphic novels that inspired the blockbuster film.

Set in the future, Paris in the year 2054, the city is a labyrinth where all movement is monitored and recorded. AVALON, the largest company in the country, casts a shadow over everything. Avalon insinuates itself in the everyday aspect of contemporary life, to sell it's primary deal: Youth and Beauty.
When a young researcher from Avalon named Ilona Tassueiv, is violently kidnapped, her employers want her found at any cost. Dellenbach, Avalon's CEO, enlists the aid of one Officer Karas(voiced by Daniel Craig), a hostage retrieval specialist and also a very controversial cop in the force, to find the missing invaluable employee. What Karas discovers is a huge web of deception, that involves not only Ilona's sister, but the higher powers as well. Officer Karas discovers something sinister within the walls of Avalon, a hidden secret that will test not only his commitment to duty, but his very fiber of morality as well. Avalon's goals for profit is an abomination. It kind of makes you wonder what big corporations can be capable of, just to meet their bottom line.

This animated feature has highly stylized visuals, although, to be honest, in my opinion, it would achieved more if it was made in Color. Although, it tries to be something different, Futuristic Science Fiction should be shot in Full color nowadays. I just had a hard time trying to contemplate how the visuals would look so much better in radiant colors, especially the chase scenes on glass floors. Granted, the black/white visuals set a certain moody and serious atmosphere, and I'm sure that is what the director intended, but I found it a bit lacking. After all, colored features can BETTER set a dark and moody atmosphere; great examples are "GHOST IN THE SHELL" and "Perfect Blue". The Black & White approach feels more like a "gimmick" than as an essential "style" that's part of the film--It felt like a short-cut to achieve attention. Perhaps I'm just so used to beautifully colored animation(I've seen a lot).

PICTURE: ANAMORPHIC WIDESCREEN(aspect ratio 2:35)Although shot in B&W, the transfer is clean. I saw a few areas of edge enhancements, some areas were too dark and lacking detail.
AUDIO: 5.1 Dolby Digital English, I didn't check out the French track. The sound is crisp and deep. The 5 channels of audio was not lacking at all.
Features: Making of Documentary/Maaz short film(didn't check it out yet)/character & production galleries.

This Animated feature is not for kids. Watch this when they are asleep. There is some nudity and sex, perhaps this is also one of reasons why it isn't in full color. The story itself is for adults, something kids wouldn't really understand. The plot is about greed, honor, morality and above all, vanity.
Although I am not particularly very moved with this film, it is still an escape from the family oriented animated features being made these days.

***1/2- RECOMMENDED for people who want to see something different, visually speaking. RENAISSANCE is still a clever attempt at something wholly original, it has the makings of a cult-classic. Don't be surprised if this style evolves.