Appropriately enough for a movie about a physical film stock produced and distributed by Netflix, Mark Raso’s Kodachrome straddles the line between two genres. The most obvious is “dying person goes on one last road trip to do one last thing while also reconciling with their adult child,” Sr. Pig (Mr. Pig) being one of the better recent examples. The other is the slightly less common “elegy for the dying media format,” in this case the 35mm still-photography that gives the film its title. In the final stages of cancer, infamous photographer Ben (Ed Harris) has a decades-old roll of Kodachrome to get developed before the final lab that processes it shuts down.
Ben’s estranged son Matt (Jason Sudeikis), a record company A&R man whose own career is becoming increasingly outmoded, is convinced by Ben’s nurse Zoe (Elizabeth Olsen) to join them on a road trip to the lab, deep in rural Kansas. Will Ben and Matt overcome their differences, and will the son learn that his difficult father loved him in his own peculiar way? Oh, maybe. Shot on 35mm Kodak film, the mostly-pleasant movie being promoted as “Netflix’s Kodachrome” also proves that no matter the format, the middle-aged guy will always get the hot woman who’s more than a decade his junior.
Opens Friday at the Embarcadero Center Cinema.