White Chamber introduces us to a world past the point of Brexit, to one of many possible futures that could be just around the corner. This future depicts a version of the UK in civil unrest, where political divisions taken to a more violent extreme as one side fights for justice against another. We meet Ruth, an admin girl, who wakes up in the auspicious white chamber without knowledge of how she got in there and soon learn there is more to Ruth and the chamber than we first thought.
On paper, White Chamber sounds incredibly exciting. It supposedly explores ideas of a political climate that we are all well versed in, bringing poignancy to reality as it shares a possible future we could be heading for. It is dark yet soft and gives a true dystopian makeover to a world that could quite literally be a few years away. However, the overall delivery of the film lacked, and it felt ultimately unsatisfying.
White Chamber has a clear point, although the true intent of this was not revealed until the film’s climax. This point is important, especially in the current political climate which seems to inspire more hate than love in the world, something which the film’s rebel group – the UKLA – fight for violently. However, the journey to get to this point felt long-winded and misguided, and it took far too long for us to truly understand the message of the film.
Furthermore, the pacing of the film lacked and often felt on the same continuous level. It felt as if we were being drip-fed information far too slowly, and the world beyond the white chamber was little explored and left unclear for the audience, bar the opening introduction of the film which was our only insight into the world outside of the White Chamber.
With that being said, the film is beautifully put together. The colour palette of the film presents us with a soft, almost inviting tone yet is harshly clinical, presenting a clear contrast between the utopian and dystopian vibes of the film. Shots of the cast silhouetted against the harsh lights of the white chamber are haunting, giving just a glimpse into the battling themes presented throughout the film. Ultimately, it is the cinematography that bring the tone of the world together perfectly.
Overall, White Chamber left me disappointed. The concept of the film, and the world in which was created is incredible and was something that first drew me to the film as fan of dystopian fiction. However, the world beyond the lab felt under explored, as did the world within the lab and the white chamber. The world outside cries out for exploration and development on screen as the world inside felt overused and repetitive.
Dir: Paul Rashid
Prd: Jonnie Hurd, Neville Rashid
Scr: Paul Rashid
Cast: Shauna McDonald, Oded Fehr, Amrita Acharia, Sharon Maughan, Nicholas Farrell, Candia Nergaard
DoP: Glen Warrillow
Music: John Harle
Running time: 89 minutes
White Chamber is available on VOD platforms now.