Monday, March 2, 2015

Review of PREDESTINATION: Circumvoluted Conundrum

March 1, 2015



This is a mind-boggling science fiction film with two main characters. One man is the Bartender who is secretly a Temporal Agent, a secret agent who gets sent by time travel to different times in history to prevent major crimes. The other is a male writer whose pseudonym was Unmarried Mother, who has a strangest life story to tell. 

The story jumps  through five decades of time, concluding in a major revelation which will make you want to curse at the screen, wondering what the hell you just watched. Telling you anything more will be spoiling the film too much already.

Veteran actor Ethan Hawke plays this Bartender character with his old reliable gruffness and grit. He seems to be able impart to any character he plays a sense of heart, no matter how heartless the character should have been. 

More outstanding though is the star-making, gender-bending debut performance of Sarah Snook as Unmarried Mother. Honestly, when I was watching the film unaware of who this impressive actress was, I could have sworn the male persona of Unmarried Mother was no other than Jodie Foster. I was surprised to see afterwards that Ms. Foster was not in this film at all. That unbelievably versatile, multi-textured performance of such a complex character was played by Ms. Snook alone.

The film was written and directed by the Spierig brothers, identical twin brothers Michael and Peter. I remember their 2010 sci-fi-infused vampire film "Daybreakers" which also starred Ethan Hawke. The script was a faithful adaptation of a 1959 short story entitled "--All You Zombies--" by  Robert A. Heinlein.

Given that this was a time-travel film, It demands attention to detail, even during the very slow set-up of the story at the beginning. There will be a lot of talking scenes which may need patience. There are also bound to be questionable plot points that various viewers will be picking on. In this film, characters can co-exist in the same time frame. This is usually a big no-no in most other time-travel films because it could result in a disruption of the space-time continuum, and may cause this character to cease existing. Here, not only do we see parallel characters in the same scene, they are actually actively interacting with their own selves in various times. 

So, I advise you to shuck all your other preconceptions, and just accept the new time travel rules this film sets for us. I bet you will enjoy the confusingly incredulous, yet convolutedly crazy "5-in-1" conundrum it presents us as it shuttles us in classic noir fashion back and forth from the 1940s to the 1990s. 8/10.



19 comments:

  1. Ohhh I have not watched an Ethan Hawke film in a long time - always rated him as an actor! Love films that require you to watch and think all the way through - may give this a go! Sim - Manchester Mummy

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  2. I love science fiction film but havent heard of this one.

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  3. I am the last person who watched sci-fis but this looks kinda interesting.

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  4. Your last lines are pretty convincing. :-) My friend told me they've watched this and they've enjoyed it, they offered to let me watch but I deferred but now, hmmm, I'm thinking, might call em to send me the copy.haha Thanks!

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  5. Ethan Hawke is such a good actor. The quote you mentioned on the rules of time travel made me more interested to watch the movie.

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  6. For me I would really have to have the time to concentrate on this film. My boyfriend however would love it. I will definitely be recommending it to him.

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  7. Ah, this is one film I must watch kasi I am a fan of Ethan Hawke. You have good review too so plus 1 na rin for me to see this flick.

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  8. I know, I know, I know, Sci-Fi is rocking the theaters and this sounds complex and fascinating and Ethan Hawke is in it. I love Ethan but I'm not a fan of the genre at all. I loved The Matrix and a few others but that's about it. As always, an excellent review.

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  9. Ethan Hawke is a favorite actor of mine ever since I saw him in Great Expectations, I like his intense presence on the screen. The Spierig brothers have innovative approach to creating movies, so this one must be great to watch.

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  10. Saw this movie and it's like some sort of Inception-inspired movie. Mind blogging and yes, I am still looking for answers on what actually happened in the end.

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  11. I didn't see the movie yet but I really want to. Thanks for the excellent review Fred! =)

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  12. I really like movies like this. Thanks for the introduction of the movie. Will watch it soon! :D

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  13. I like science fiction but perhaps the movie would like to portray how bad the outcome would be if you violate the movement of time.

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  14. The story jumps through five decades of time, concluding in a major revelation which will make you want to curse at the screen, wondering what the hell you just watched.

    Will I be cursing it because it was good or because it was kind of bad? :p Still, this movie interests me. ^^

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    1. Certainly I mean it in a good way for me. But others may have a different opinion. Haha!

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  15. I love ethan,sci-fi, and time travel always seems to change the rules or breaks them I think that part of the phone trying to figure out what is really the order of events.

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  16. I'm a big Ethan Hawke fan and will love to see this movie.

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  17. Never read or watched anything Sci-Fi. I leave that to my brothers. Will tell them about this! :)

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