Thanks to Cowlick Entertainment Group we got to see Harmony before its Australian release. This is our review of the movie, but as usual, no matter what we say, we still recommend you to go and see it at your local cinema because there is no better critic than yourself!
Written, directed and co-produced by Corey Pearson, the fantasy thriller Harmony is the proposed first of a five-part saga, The Five Frequencies. The saga’s storylines centre around five orphans, each gifted with unique powers, to rescue humankind from dark forces. Harmony (Jessica Falkholt) is one of these orphans, who has the ability to absorb other’s fears. This physically manifests itself in a black liquid matter taken into her body that water is able to wash away. However, if Harmony ingests too much fear, her own life is at risk.
Filmed in the Sydney and Illawarra regions the audience would have recognised many landmark and locations, as I did. The entire cast, though, speak with American accents (even the old homeless guy in Hyde Park) which becomes slightly distracting. Harmony’s nemesis, gangleader Jimmy,is played by Eamon Farren who worked in the 2017 U.S television series of Twin Peaks. So I’d imagine Harmony is set to reach a broader audience, namely American.
There are echoes of Stieg Larsson’s Girl With the Dragon Tattoo‘s heroine, Lisbeth, in Harmony’s character: slender lone wolf, clad in black jeans and hoodie with no real family (although the nurse from her baby ward, Jean, played by Paula Arundell, mentions caring for her in the past). Harmony’s industrial neighbourhood and home is harsh and gritty, set in contrast to the goodness she shares. A sense of cosmic foreboding, seen in the tumultuos night skies, is reminiscent of Ghostbusters or, more recently Avengers: InfinityWar, but despite its genre classification, the film doesn’t seem to fulfill either ‘fantasy’ or ‘thriller’ completely. The sub-plot of Harmony and Mason’s (Jerome Meyer) romance becomes the strongest theme, just as The Twilight Saga was more about Bella and Edward’s relationship than vampirism.
For a teenage or alternative crowd, Harmony – both character and film – probably speaks to social misfits or individuals searching for a sense of self-identity and belonging. Cinematography-wise, it’s fair, given its non-Hollywood production and budget. How it can be successful as a five-part series, with my level of captivation not strong enough to anticipate the next instalment, will prove interesting.
The audience were told of Jessica Falkholt‘s “family’s legacy” by the teary producer before the film commenced. Sadly, Jessica and her parents and sister were killed in a car crash in December last year. The first part of the Harmony saga involved many focus group consultations before filming commenced, to get a feel for public opinion. With the loss of its main actor and certain pitfalls in the finished product, this may have to occur again before the second part is produced.
Harmony – Now in cinemas