I am always disappointed when a lot of time and money is wasted on a film that isn’t well thought out. True Skin is one of those films. How do you make a film with such high-concept visual effects without thinking about the plot and whether or not it makes any sense?
True Skin is a futuristic look at a world in which we buy replacement parts for those that are no longer working correctly or for simple aesthetic enhancement. Cool. I like the idea of the film, and when it first began, I immediately saw influences of Blade Runner. And like the Blade Runner narrator, Kaye is telling us how he got into his current predicament. Again, cool. I have no problem with that, in theory.
However, in a film only 6:13 in length, every second better count and if it doesn’t make any sense, then you’ve lost me. Kaye talks about the world of enhancement as a “trend that’s here to stay.” Then he says, “I had no choice but to enhance. Even if I had to steal that damn prototype.” There is no mention as to why he had to steal it instead of just buying his enhancements, nor why the prototype was necessary. Why didn’t he have a choice?
So, he steals this implant that goes on his face. People start looking for him. And why would he think they wouldn’t be able to catch him immediately. If technology has advanced that far, why wouldn’t they have some sort of tracer on the parts? Then he hides out in Bangkok and changes his face. So the big question is, since he can afford to change his face, why can’t he buy enhancements?
This film is confusing and ill-thought out. Not to mention that the gratuitous sex imagery, which seems to be the fantasy of too many male filmmakers, stands out as a ridiculous aside rather than part of the plot. While in the middle of running from authorities, who are very likely going to kill you, who has the time to stop for a romp with an android?
With an ending that is abrupt and incomplete, this film is not worth the frustration. Seriously, if you’re going to try to emulate Blade Runner, it better be good and True Skin isn’t.
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