Fast Color (2019)

Fast Color.jpegDirector: Julia Hart
Running Time: 102 Minutes
Rating: N/A (presumably 12a)
Starring: Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Lorraine Toussaint, Saniyya Sidney, Christopher Denham, David Strathairn, Levi Dylan Martinez

Over the past decade, superhero films have become one of the most prominent pieces of modern cinema. As the genre has grown in scale and budget, director Julia Hart has swam against the tide, bringing to screen a more grounded and intimate take, which follows three generations of women. Our lead, Ruth (Gugu Mbatha-Raw), is prone to seizures which cause earthquakes, and this has led to her being on the run from law enforcement, and scientists who want to study her. She has been left with one place to go, to the family she abandoned long before.

For much of the runtime, they're gathered in a remote house, where generations of their family have lived. Through Julia Hart's direction, and her script-work with co-writer Jordan Horowitz, you feel the history and lineage of the setting, ensuring it feels like a deep rooted part of this family tree. The same could be said of their powers, a generational gift which has been passed down through the women, and you feel it's connective bond with such ease. We may not see a lot of the powers, but it's a visually spectacular display whenever they're on-screen.

Taking the lead role is Gugu Mbatha-Raw, putting in an exceptional performance as Ruth, a character that's fearful of her destructive abilities, but is most afraid of reconnecting with her mother and daughter. As the past hangs over their heads, their relationship lies in a fraught place, but is not irreparable. The history between these characters is captured so very well, helped by the fantastic performances of Lorraine Toussaint, and Saniyya Sidney, ensuring the feel that what's broken can be fixed.

If I had any criticisms, there are some elements which could've been expanded upon, such as the setting being rain-free for a number of years. Regardless, what we're left with is a wonderfully compelling piece, which works for how self-contained it is, while leaving viewers wanting more. It's also a great counterpoint to the grand scale films of Marvel and DC, satisfying anybody with the urge for an original piece of work.

Fast Color is available to watch on Netflix in the UK. Do check it out.