By Joan Alperin-Schwartz
‘In Time’ is a sci/fi thriller written, directed and produced by Andrew Niccol (Gattaca)…Maybe that’s the problem. You know what they say about wearing too many hats…
Okay, when the film begins, we discover that we are now in the future….A future where you stop aging at 25…(Guess that put a big dent in the Botox industry). Your mother, sister, grandmother, grandfather etc, all look 25 so it’s hard to tell if you’re hitting on someones mother or daughter. You get the idea.
After 25, you get one free year to live…After that, you have to work for every extra second, minute, hour, day…If you want to eat, have a place to live, you have to pay with ‘time’…Your time. Unless of course, you come from time.
In other words…’Do you have a minute’ takes on a whole new meaning.
People are now separated by time-zones.
Everyone has a bar code on their arm that glows green. When you gain time, the numbers go up…lose time, the numbers go down.
Will Salas (Justin Timberlake) lives minute-to-minute in the Ghetto known as Dayton. But one day, everything changes for him. A stranger, named Henry Hamilton (Matt Bomer) gives him a ‘century’. It seems Henry doesn’t want to live anymore.
Unfortunately, the gift comes too late to save Will’s mother (Olivia Wilde). She runs out of time and keels over dead right in front of him. After that, things go from bad to worse for our guy.
Will is unjustly accused of murdering Henry and he’s forced to go on the run…He steals a car and heads for the rich side of town…New Greenwich. Far from the ghetto, the wealthy leisurely stroll down the streeet, covering their bar codes with elbow length gloves and spend their days gambling and looking bored.
Will checks into a luxurious suite (after all time is no longer a problem) buys a hot sports car and goes to a fancy casino where he meets poor little rich girl, Sylvia (Amanda Seyfried). Together the two of them decide the system is corrupt, the world is unfair and they go on a Bonnie & Clyde rampage to change things.
Sounds exciting? Well it’s not.
First of all, when you create a world like Niccols did, you have to explain how and why it all came about. I mean, did the huge pharmaceutical giants just sit idly by while disease and aging was wiped out? Who came up with the idea to genetically alter human beings? I’m sure the religious groups had no problem with it.
Also Timberlake and Seyfried have absolutely no chemistry together. Neither one of them, are very exciting to watch. Looking pretty isn’t enough to sustain this muddled SciFi flick. There are some interesting moments, but unfortunately, the film becomes one big monotonous chase, after awhile.
I did like Gillian Murphy as the timekeeper. Murphy is a by-the book cop, who even though knows that the system sucks, he’s still determined to do his job.
‘In Time’ opens in theaters, Friday, October 28, 2011. This time, John and I actually agree on how many bagels this film should get…Well, almost agree.