Mona Lisa And The Blood Moon movie review: Visually satisfying but thinly plotted

22 June,2024 04:25 PM IST |  Mumbai  |  Johnson Thomas

The narrative has little to say other than present the ridiculous in an appealingly campy way

Mona Lisa And The Blood Moon movie review

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Film: Mona Lisa And The Blood Moon
Cast: Jun Jong-seo, Kate Hudson, Ed Skrein, Evan Whitten, Craig Robinson, Lauren Bowles, Serene Lee, Cory Roberts
Director: Ana Lily Amirpour
Rating: 2/5
Runtime: 106 min.

This film loses heft in the first few minutes itself. We see a young incarcerated girl escaping prison/Mental asylum by way of her telekinetic powers. Now if you just thought about it, you would question how she got into being incarcerated in the first place. You won't find any answers here. The film is a visual experience at best. There's no plot and the script is devoid of depth.

In the first 30 odd min the girl Mona (Jeon Jong-seo), after escaping, encounters drunk women who lend her shoes and some money, has a run-in with a drug dealer, then a cop, meets up with a stripper Bonnie (Kate Hudson)who dances at a strip club on Bourbon Street, at a fast-food restaurant. The stripper takes her into her home where she lives with her young son and thereafter, believing that she may be exploited, leaves again - this time with the stripper's pre-teen son. This is mainly her journey after escaping captivity. How she navigates the world outside after a decade of being locked in? What is left unexplained though is whether she developed those supernatural powers while in captivity or had them all along? Mona is wilful and never fearful.

The narrative has little to say other than present the ridiculous in an appealingly campy way. There's a whole lot of style in the presentation but no substance. The scripting is woefully week. Other than a few shocking moments, everything else is predictable. There's no back story, characters don't have any other dimensions other than the cutout like representations you are exposed to here.

Jeon Jong-seo does well to stay mysterious and dangerous and Kate Hudson is just there doing her bit to stay in the picture. Neither of the performances matter.

Ana Lily Amirpour's vision is unique. The soundtrack and cinematography are appealing. It's the helmer's inventive visual language that's on show here. Deep and bright colors lend the film a rave-like psychedelic quality. The dreamy, trippy lighting and weird angles make it seem like there are nuances here that are not so obvious.

The music is an eclectic mix of EDM, rock and several other genres - thus lending weight to the trippy experience.

Set in some of the sleaziest environs of New Orleans this is an indie fable, a fantasy that is both lurid and violent. There's no human emotion here that can get you to invest your attention on something so gimmicky and showy.

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