New Sci-Fi Releases: A Twisted Reality: Diverge (2018) Reviewed

If one thing has been rammed into our minds time and time again, it’s that our dismal future on Earth will be a cold existence where disease and famine will be our ultimate undoing. Once again driving that point home is the indie feature, Diverge. When our main character finds himself alone in a brutal and desolate wasteland outside the walls of the city, things suddenly get bizarre. 

The 2016 science fiction thriller Diverge finally sees the light of day two years after its initial release. Stemming from many standard science fiction ideals, this smaller budgeted feature connects the dots between many films we’ve seen before with major nods to larger movies like Blade Runner and The Road. When a killer virus has wiped out the world as we know it, a man’s journey to solve a great mystery sees paths of reality cross in a project that moves at a snail’s pace as it sets up a series of questions that consistently inhabit the films that truly cross science with fiction. Set between two different time frames, audiences are treated to both a futuristic barren world and a past that was not kind to the human race.

Like so many other genre films that don’t have the financial resources to back many of the necessary demands of the project, the heart of Diverge is there but is confined and can't deliver some big ideas that never truly come to fruition. Scenes that could have used better visuals or fantastical elements are held back by a budget that doesn’t do this movie justice. The core story is an interesting one that die hard sci-fi viewers can latch onto but things feel like they’re not fleshed out in many areas and some major plot points could have used more attentiveness to detail. Even character development seems to fall by the wayside.

The Road is long and hard. 

When attempting to solve a mystery, especially one that involves the fate of humankind, the dialogue and story telling needs to be sharp. What plays like an extended episode of the Twilight Zone at times might be confusing for people that don’t have a lot of time invested in understanding time travel or paradoxical story lines. Led by actor Ivan Sandomire, the acting is here is solid but mildly hampered by direction that could have used more creative ambition. 

If you're looking for other films that fall into this sub-category, check out Si Horrocks' 2013 feature Third Contact. It's another feature that blends and meshes into the grey area where humanity and technology have fateful outcomes. It's not that Diverge is truly bad. It just doesn't feel finished. There's something here but maybe just not enough to keep our attention for the entire run time.