Beyond The Black Rainbow

Beyond The Black Rainbow

Directed by: Panos Cosmatos
110 minutes

New England Premiere

The year is 1983. A young woman, Elena, is being held hostage in a high-tech facility created by Dr. Mercurio Arboria, a scientist who researches methods of spiritual enlightenment. His protégé, Dr. Barry Nyle, observes his prisoner with pleasure. Elena’s psychic powers are being controlled by heavy sedation and a mysterious, glowing white pyramid. When not scheming to control Elena, Drs. Nyle and Arborio do drugs. Lots and lots of drugs.

Watching BEYOND THE BLACK RAINBOW, you may begin to feel like you’ve discovered a vintage sci-fi B movie from the early ’80s. Maybe you will even experience a vague, unsettling memory of having seen it on Night Flight as a teenager, having dozed off only to enter its dreamy atmosphere when you inadvertently awoke at 3 a.m. BEYOND THE BLACK RAINBOW is not, in fact, a vintage film, but it so perfectly captures the creepy weirdness of the low-budget works from the period it depicts that it could easily be mistaken for one. Director Panos Cosmatos pays homage to dozens of sci-fi greats, from Cronenberg to Kubrick to Carpenter. But with its dazzling, hallucinogenic imagery and hypnotic soundscape, Cosmatos’s film is a unique cinematic experience all its own.

—Kristina Aikens