Kaleidoscope, review: the thousand pieces of a single story

Kaleidoscope, review: the thousand pieces of a single story

Kaleidoscope, review

Crime period on Netflix this year opening. Not satisfied with having offered us the second investigation by Benoit Blanc with Onion Glas s and the return of the Bale-Cooper couple with The Pale Blue Eye, Reed Hasting's streaming service chooses to face the always exciting atmosphere of heist movies from a new perspective, indeed from several perspectives simultaneously. A plurality of points of view that is already envisaged by the title of the new miniseries by Henry Garcia, Kaleidoscope , which arrived on Netflix at the dawn of the new year.

One could hardly conceive a title more in line with what is being on stage in this new miniseries. By definition, the kaleidoscope is a game based on the interaction of different pieces of colored glass inserted into a cylinder in which our eye can enjoy recomposing colored shapes, which change according to the movements we make the cylinder. Random combinations that compose symmetrical figures, born from the union of apparently unrelated fragments. A lively and almost lysergic dynamism, which sees a perfect narrative interpretation in the structure of the miniseries, so well thought out that one wonders why Netflix did not want to give more prominence to this captivating miniseries. If the aforementioned titles were the subject of a more reasoned promotion by the streaming channel, also thanks to a high-profile cast ( Onion Glass ) or a highly popular actor ( The Pale Blue Eye ), Kaleidoscope would have deserved the same treatment , considering that the story of Henry Garcia is an innovative experience for the serial sector.

Kaleidoscope , the new dimension of heist movies for Netflix

In the tradition of heist movies , the robbery is not the essence of the story, but rather an arrival point, leaving that to be the planning the real crux of the plot. A lesson that we have well learned from cult films such as Ocean's Eleven or Now You See Me, examples of how the big hit is only the culmination of careful planning and a certain tendency towards spectacularity with which to deceive the viewer.

Like a good sleight of hand, the perfect heist is equally the result of good preparation and a spectacular visual story . Strengthened by these two intuitions, Kaleidoscope goes further, setting up a narrative game that recalls the aforementioned game, the perfect optical illusion in which the different parts recombine to create a surprising image capable of astonishing the viewer. Usually we tend to look suspiciously at the high-sounding declarations of the presentations, yet Netflix must be credited with having presented Kaleidoscope with a commendable sincerity:

a non-linear approach to storytelling and builds intrigue and suspense in a unique way, offering Netflix subscribers different viewing experiences.

High-sounding, all too seductive in a period in which missing opportunities follow one another and we are witnessing the closure of products that would deserved better fate. Kaleidoscope proves to be an honest production both in the presentation and in the realization, aiming at an exciting and apparently Machiavellian stylistic innovation, but which instead proves to be an encouragement to viewers to live the heist movie concept in a total and satisfying way.

The starting point is a news story. In October 2012, after hurricane Sandy had hit New York, seventy billion dollars in bonds were found, an incredible event that influenced Garcia to such an extent that he pushed him to create a miniseries that would make this paradoxical event part of a spectacular robbery. Garcia's intuition is not to be appreciated only for the way in which he has been able to give a cinematic cut to a serial production, but above all for having created a narrative mosaic in which the different chapters are developed in such a way that they can all be ideals first episodes , giving complete freedom to the viewer. An experiment that is anything but obvious, considering that the traditional practice of binge watching has led to frantically consuming a series in the order proposed, while Kaleidoscope, due to its unpredictable nature, should instead be lived as an authentic, personal entertainment experience.

A personal journey in a great story

Contributing to this innovative soul of Kaleidoscope is the construction of a horizontal plot that unfolds over a span of twenty-five years, involving eight characters who, despite being part of a team, are anything but open and honest with each other other. Moved by greed, personal anxieties or revenge, these criminals are part of a Machiavellian mechanics in which the classic figures of a heist movie (bassist, burglar, driver and the like) are valued in such a way as to make them essential to the success of the blow, but also some angular elements for each other, going to build a climate of latent tension which, depending on the order of viewing of the episodes, becomes the column of the plot.

It is no coincidence that the eight protagonists of Kaleidoscope equal the number of episodes of this mini-series, each defined by a color (Yellow, Green, Red, Blue, Pink, White, Orange and Purple), which not only mentions the subway lines of the Big Apple, but they are perfect chromatic figures for the main emotions of the reference episode. As mentioned, there is no ideal order to better enjoy the story of Kaleidoscope, but only the will on the part of the viewer to approach this intriguing mini-series with the certainty of being faced with a production of another level, supported not only by a incredibly well-structured plot by Garcia, but also by an excellent cast (over which stands a never too incensed Giancarlo Esposito) who in turn becomes the protagonist of the scene, going to tell a story which, although characterized by its own identity, is renewed continuously on through different narrative nuances, moving easily from a dimension tinged with irony to a more scathing and cynical portrait of adrift characters.

If the intro with which we are greeted in Nero, the brief initial presentation, promises an innovative and atypical experience in the current serial panorama, after having lived the entirety of Kaleidoscope one must admit to having lived exactly as much as it had been announced to us: a series capable of looking the best heist movies in the eye, not only holding up the comparison, but showing once again how the concept of seriality is progressing towards a stylistic and production dimension capable of offering entertainment of the highest quality.

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