August 8, 2016

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...a solid effort that'll appeal to fans of cerebral genre works.
resto still


Travis Johnson
Year: 2016
Director: Stuart Willis

Grant Cartwright, Stephen Carracher, Nadia Townsend, Craig McLachlan, Rosie Lourde

Distributor: Channel 9, Stan
Released: 8 September (Stan)
Running Time: 50 minutes
Worth: $12.00

FilmInk rates movies out of $20 — the score indicates the amount we believe a ticket to the movie to be worth

…a solid effort that’ll appeal to fans of cerebral genre works.

In the very near future, people can have their memories digitised and backed up as proof against death or mental disability – the old memories are simply uploaded into a new clone body. It’s a procedure normally reserved for the very wealthy or the very valuable – like lawyer Oliver Klein (Grant Cartwright) who, following a memory-recording session, wakes up to find a month had fallen off the calendar, indicating that his last backup has been activated. That’d be bad enough, except he’s also in a completely different body (Stephen Carracher). Oliver needs to unravel what’s happened to him and why, all the while dealing with the knowledge that he’s no longer the only Oliver running around.

This short Australian SF feature owes a lot to Philip K. Dick – in terms of cinema, Total Recall comes immediately to mind – but given that, so does every second sci-fi film that comes down the pike these days; that’s no bad thing. Restoration is bolder than most, grappling with the notions of identity, personality and actual personhood that come with the whole idea of memory recording: Are we our body or our mind? Is a copy of our mind us, or another person, or just an echo of ourselves? And what if there are multiple copies?

It’s a low budget affair (it looks like most of the money went on one-scene-wonder Craig McLachlan) that is predicated more on ideas than action, and even at only 50 minutes it could stand to be either a bit shorter or more incident-filled, but it’s a solid effort that’ll appeal to fans of cerebral genre works.


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