The Netflix crime thriller “Kaleidoscope” and “High School” from Amazon Prime

Kaleidoscope ★★★½
Netflix

As the thief Leo Pap, Giancarlo Esposito (with Paz Vega) is an imposing linchpin of the robbery thriller Kaleidoscope.

As the thief Leo Pap, Giancarlo Esposito (with Paz Vega) is an imposing linchpin of the robbery thriller Kaleidoscope.Credit:David Scott Holloway

This slick heist thriller doesn’t just want to grab you with plot twists, it wants to alter the actual narrative to reshape your perception of the story. kaleidoscope has eight color-coded episodes: White, the actual heist, is always shown last, but otherwise the previous seven episodes appear in random order. It’s not just about answers first, then questions. What you first learn about the characters, particularly Giancarlo Esposito’s thief Leo Pap, affects how you interpret what they subsequently do.

Yes, it’s a gimmick, but it works because the individual blocks are sturdy enough to support multiple journeys through 25 years of storytelling. My own sequence was more conventional, starting with Yellow, which was set six months before the raid and provided a quick introduction to Leo and the crew he put together. If the first episode had been pink, which took place six months later and serves as an elegy, what followed would have felt tragic.

The creator of this limited series, Eric Garcia, plays on our judgments and even our own prejudices. The unfolding of Leo, who harbors a grudge against the owner of the supposedly impregnable New York vault he plans to rob, Roger Salas (Rufus Sewell), is somewhat transparent. But the arc of others, especially Hannah Kim (Tati Gabrielle), is revealing in vastly different ways depending on your viewing order. Crime stories always revolve around trust issues kaleidoscope wants you to doubt yourself.

As a genre work, it has a swaggering lightness partly reminiscent of Ocean’s Eleven, and some of the supporting cast, notably Jai Courtney’s loose unit Bob Goodwin, are effusively familiar. After decades of supporting roles, especially as breaking Bad‘s Gus Fring, Esposito is an imposing pivot that uses boilerplate text like “Are you in or are you out?” a tempting load. However, he is 64 years old and while that is the breadth of Leo’s experience, playing 25 years younger is a very far fetch.

set during a gale force storm, White is a satisfying crime-fighting finale, complete with payoffs for mysteries uncovered in previous installments. But the real achievement here might be that the nonlinear distribution itself is a decoy. For example, if you focus on the motivations of a hard-nosed FBI agent, Nazan Abassi (Niousha Noor), you might be surprised by the most profound revelation the show delivers. kaleidoscope may be an entertaining show about theft, but its most important element is what it secretly adds.

High School ★★★★
Amazon Prime

High School is based on the memoirs by Canadian alternative music stars Tegan and Sara Quin.

High School is based on the memoirs by Canadian alternative music stars Tegan and Sara Quin.Credit:Michelle Faye/Amazon

This coming-of-age drama is a small miracle. Borrowing from Canadian alternative pop stars Tegan and Sara’s 2019 memoir of the same name, it manages to be both keenly specific to her adolescent discovery of sexuality and music in the mid-1990s Calgary suburbs, and more broadly a heartfelt one Summary of the youthful experience, whether bewildering, obsessive, or joyful. Every lens convinces.

https://www.smh.com.au/culture/tv-and-radio/in-heist-thriller-kaleidoscope-the-viewer-chooses-their-own-adventure-20221230-p5c9i9.html?ref=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_source=rss_culture The Netflix crime thriller “Kaleidoscope” and “High School” from Amazon Prime

Jaclyn Diaz

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