DirectorChristian Volckman Initial DVD releaseDecember 8, 2006 (Greece) Duration LanguageFrench
Release date15 March 2006 (2006-03-15) WriterAlexandre de La Patelliere (original story), Matthieu Delaporte (original story), Michael Katims (english dialogue), Alexandre de La Patelliere (adaptation), Jean-Bernard Pouy (adaptation), Patrick Raynal (adaptation), Matthieu Delaporte (adaptation) CastDaniel Craig (Barthélémy Karas), Catherine McCormack (Bislane Tasuiev), Romola Garai (Ilona Tasuiev), Jonathan Pryce (Paul Dellenbach), Ian Holm (Jonas Muller), Kevork Malikyan (Nusrat Farfella) Similar moviesThe Hunger Games: Catching Fire, RoboCop, Independence Day, G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, Repo Man, Irreversible
TaglineParis 2054. Live forever or die trying
Renaissance, also known as Paris 2054: Renaissance, is a 2006 animated tech noir science fiction film. The movie, which was co-produced in France, United Kingdom and Luxembourg, was directed by Christian Volckman. It was released on 15 March 2006 in France and 28 July 2006 in the UK by Miramax Films. In the English language version, some of the main characters are voiced by Daniel Craig, Jonathan Pryce and Ian Holm. Renaissance uses a style of motion capture animation in which almost all images are exclusively black-and-white; only occasional colour is used for detail. The film concerns a French policeman investigating the kidnapping of a scientist who may hold the key to eternal life in a futuristic and slightly dystopian Paris.
The film opens in a future Paris with scenes establishing the kidnapping of 22-year-old scientist Ilona Tasuiev, who works for the megacorporation Avalon. The focus transitions to police captain Barthélémy Karas, as he defuses a hostage situation by killing the hostage-takers. Afterwards Karas is given the job of solving the mystery surrounding Ilona's disappearance. Karas begins by contacting Dr. Jonas Muller, a former Avalon scientist familiar with her.
Muller had been working to cure progeria, a genetic condition which affected his brother. Muller worked for Avalon as their top scientist but left after he failed to find a cure and his brother died. He took up new work at a free clinic. Muller tells Karas that "No one ever leaves Avalon", throwing the corporation under suspicion. Karas visits Paul Dellenbach, one of Avalon's CEOs and questions him about Ilona. On suggesting he may have been sleeping with her, Dellenbach replies "I sleep with my wife, I sleep with my secretary, I even sleep with my sister-in-law but I would never sleep with one of my researchers".
After following a series of dead ends, control tells Karas they are tailing Illona's car through Paris. Eventually he captures the driver after a chase which ends at the Eiffel Tower. The man turns out to be a henchmen of Farfella, an Arab Muslim mobster and a childhood friend of Karas. The police captain returns the criminal to Farfella who in return gives him security footage of Illona's kidnapping; it shows her car being stolen by an incredibly old man.
Karas asks Ilona's sister, Bislane, who works for Avalon to break into the company's Archives to discover what Muller was researching. The sister discovers that a Dr. Nakata worked with Muller in a quest to find a cure for progeria. But they destroyed all evidence of their work when some of the children they were testing on started to mutate. Karas and Bislane then escape because accessing the closed file has alerted Avalon security.
Later Karas opens up to Bislane and tells her that he and Farfella were raised in the casbah where they worked with gangs. After a drug run went wrong, they ended up in a holding cell. Farfella escaped but Karas was left to the mercy of the other gang. Karas puts Bislane under false arrest to protect her from Avalon. Meanwhile, Ilona is shown confined in a cyber ball which is being controlled by the old man.
Eventually Karas tracks down Muller. He explains that he took Ilona because through her research she has discovered the secret to eternal life (as he himself did 40 years ago); but knowing what the consequences would be if Avalon acquired such knowledge, he kidnapped her. Karas tries to encourage the old scientist to hand himself in but Muller is mistakenly shot by a police marksman. Karas then deduces that the mysterious old man is Muller's younger brother: now immortal but trapped in an elderly body.
Karas calls on Farfella who hides Bislane from Avalon while also getting a fake passport for Ilona. However the mega-corporation's security are also closing in on the Parisian sewer where Ilona is being held captive. After a short battle, Karas is mortally wounded rescuing Ilona. However she refuses to take the fake passport to start a new life. Instead she tells Karas she wants immortality by giving her discovery to Avalon. Reluctantly Karas shoots her in the back as she walks back towards Avalon security. CEO Dellenbach watches all this happen through a live feed from one of his men's helmet camera.
As Karas lies mortally injured from a gunshot wound, he imagines himself apologising to Bislane for killing her sister for which she forgives him. The film closes with Muller's little brother living as a tramp, throwing his picture of him and his brother into a burning bin. The final scene shows an advert for Avalon with an old woman becoming young again saying, "With Avalon, I know I'm beautiful and I'm going to stay that way."