Beyond Existence (2022) – Film Review
Director: Schuman Hoque
Cast: Amelia Clay, Gary MacKay, Vincent Vermignon
By Roger Crow
Ellen is a government agent assigned to protect a professor with a deadly secret. Both are being harassed by a mysterious bounty hunter, and clearly the contents of the boffin’s suitcase contain a McGuffin so important, that the fate of the universe depends on it. Or something.
From that visually stunning opening shot of a pyramid and strange goings on, it’s clear this sci-fi thriller has a lot going for it.
Amelia Clay gives a convincing performance as the heroine, while Gary MacKay also does a good job of selling the premise.
However, there’s a LOT of talking and travelling. Loads of exposition is fine when dealing with high concept dramas like this, but a change of scene would have been nice. And a lot more levity.
When the big reveal comes, and that suitcase is opened to reveal a Tesseract-style plot device, stranger things start happening.
Visual effects are pretty good for what is obviously a modestly budgeted thriller. The movie ticks over, and when that finale comes, the door is left open for a sequel. If that happens one day, there’s no doubt a more ambitious follow-up can expand on some interesting ideas.
Okay, it’s no game-changer in a genre dominated by Earth people reacting to a stranger’s revelations about where they come from and the potential fate of the human race.
Thankfully the leads do such a good job of sustaining the interest that you’ll gloss over the fact this feels like a Brit version of The X Files with a wispy, otherworldly entity being just enough to tickle the interest and satisfy that craving for wonderful weirdness.
The problem of course is that two folks on the run from enemy forces while dealing with BIG ideas has been done countless times in films such as Starman, Midnight Special, and a hundred other flicks. However, there’s a lot of potential here.
If you liked Carl Strathie’s superior sci-fi yarn Dark Encounter, which pops up occasionally on Film4, then this may also appeal.