Errors of the Human Body review

Synopsis: Haunted by a personal loss, a brilliant geneticist working on a top-secret project unwittingly unleashes a virus in this sci-fi thriller.
Supporting actors: Tómas Lemarquis
Directed by: Eron Sheean
Genre: Drama, Thriller
Runtime: 1 hour 42 minutes
Release year: 2013
Studio: IFC Midnight


            Just a decade ago science fiction films was a niche market, with more mainstream cinema veering towards action or thrillers for spectacle and independent film vying for more reality-based drama. There has been a shift, however, where science fiction films like Star Trek, Avatar, John Carter and District 9 are successful. At the same time, independent films have stuck with the realism while integrating science fiction plots in films like Moon, Another Earth and Errors of the Human Body.


            Errors of the Human Body brings science fiction back to the laboratory, a popular location in the past and one which was similarly delved into with additional spectacle in the blockbuster Splice. The difference between this film and Splice is scope and spectacle. This is an independent film which takes a more practical approach to science fiction material, though the end result feels just a bit disappointing. Instead of being more intelligent or thought-provoking than Splice, this film just feels slower and quieter.


            Michael Eklund stars as Dr Geoff Burton, a scientist doing a controversial genetic research study at a new position in the world-renowned Institute for Molecular Cell Biology & Genetics in Dresden, Germany. Creating a human regeneration gene with a former lab assistant (Karoline Herfurth) through extensive research, Burton is horrified to discover that the test formula is being taken by a fellow researcher (Tómas Lemarquis). There is a great deal of mystery and suspense behind the intentions of Burton’s colleagues, as well as his jaded past. Unfortunately, the suspense is all much more satisfying than any answers given.


            I kept waiting for Errors of the Human Body to do something. The way the film is shot and directed had me interested, but the story never provides enough to make any of the style worthwhile. The characters never become likeable, much less understandable or relatable. The biggest problem is that we are only given glimpse into their past, but not enough to truly appreciate who we are following around for an hour-and-a-half. This would be fine if the story went anywhere, but there is just enough plot for a short film. This minor amount of paranoid science fiction cinema is stretched out to the point that it becomes drab and dull.

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