If You Have The “Time”: In Time (Movie Review)

So I somehow managed to double-book myself between press screenings for In Time and The Rum Diaries.  Bummer!  It was a hard decision to make between which one I would ultimately have to pass on.  In Time looked promising in the action department, where as The Rum Diaries features my new favorite, the beautiful Miss Amber Heard.  What’s a guy supposed to do?  I reluctantly chose In Time and graciously let Mary Welms have Johnny Depp all to herself.  I’m such a nice guy sometimes.  It’s a crying shame people don’t see my inner beauty more often.  Instead, they seemingly focus on my skeleton bike jacket and my long sexy hair.  Boo!

If my research is correct, In Time is actually the third name this science fiction thriller has donned.  It was previously called Now and I’m.mortal.  The film was written and directed by Andrew Niccol.  Lucky man!   However, what’s even more impressive is the star-studded cast of Amanda Seyfried, Justin Timberlake, Cillian Murphy, Olivia Wilde and many more.

The ambitious movie asks a lot from us.  It asks us to be patient, forgiving and ambitiously willing to suspend our disbeliefs while we switch off the real world around us and exist solely in the alternate universe we are made to surrender to for 115 minutes.  I’m not saying that like its a bad thing, after all, I did love Inception (who didn’t?), but this film is no Inception.

As I mentioned before, In Time is set in an alternate future where, stay with me now, the aging gene has been switched off.  Yep.  You heard what I said…the aging gene.  People stop aging at 25 years old.  That wouldn’t be a bad thing for the many who love the way they look at 25, but there’s a catch.  You see, people live with a digital clock imprinted on their arm.  It dictates how long you will live.  So when I said there’s a catch, here it is.  If the obnoxious glowing green neon clock on your arm wasn’t enough, once you turn 25 it starts counting down and you only have a year left on your life.  Bam!  If that’s not a slap in the face, then I don’t know what is.  In essence, turning 25 in this universe is like turning 50 in ours.  Relax!  I’m just kidding.  Everyone knows that half-life is in our 30’s.  Laugh out loud.

So you all still with me?  I mean, this is all plausible, right?  So people have this seemingly unavoidable death sentence at age 25 to curb the problem of overpopulation.  When you run out of time, your heart just stops and that’s it.  Lights out!  So in essence, another way to look at all of this is that time becomes a currency and it is the way people pay for luxuries and necessities like food, coffee and housing.  I’m not kidding about any of this by the way.  This is the movie’s premise.  Te rich are able to live forever.  One can almost say like a vampire, they are immortal, while the rest of the population does anything the can to earn extra minutes on their clocks, including manual labor.  Yuck!

So here’s the Act One plot point.  A very poor 28-year old man (28 in real years), Will Salas (Justin Timberlake), is accused of murder when he inherits a fortune of time from a man who has lived over one hundred years and seemingly doesn’t want to live a day longer.  He becomes a wanted felon.  He is forced to go on the run from a police force known as, try not to laugh, the Timekeepers.  Also, hot on his tail is a mob called; I hope you are ready for this, The Minutemen.  Who comes up with this stuff?  These names are almost as ridiculous as Unobtainium!  The leader of this mob goes by the name of Fortis (Alex Pettyfer).  He is 75-years old.  But remember…EVERYONE in this film looks not a day over the ripe age of 25-years old, except Cillian Murphy, but that’s a completely different story.  And what would our tale be without a little romance….enter the beautiful Amanda Seyfried.  Every rogue time stealer needs a dame in distress, right?

If I had to rate this film I would give it a 2.5 or 3 out of 5 doggies depending on what kind of mood I was in.  I was happy to have seen it, but unless I’m offered a review copy, I probably won’t be seeing it again anytime soon.  It’s ambitious and bold.  I like that about it.  But it’s all over the place at the same time.  It’s almost like they describe in screenwriting courses as double jeopardy.  We are asked to believe and put our trust in this alternate universe, but he time jumping on the arms was utter lunacy at times, no pun intended with the repeat term.  Frequently, I couldn’t tell who had what time left on their arms during the presentation.  One minute Will would have 100 years and the next he would have five minutes.  It was too much, in my opinion, but nevertheless, it was also very cool at times too.  The stakes were high, but they were only believable if you didn’t allow your suspension of disbelief to be broken.  Beware of distractions at the theater when you check this one out.  You need to concentrate.  No loud popcorn chewing or Twizzlers unwrapping!  If your disbelief is broken, forever will this movie probably suck in your repertoire.  I like how the movie didn’t waste anytime setting up the world we were about to live in.  Its Lord of the Rings-like narrative was efficient in its delivery and hey…worst-case scenario it has something for both the guys and gals, Justin and Amanda.  How can you go wrong?  If you have the “time,” check it out, yo!


Owner/Writer/Reviewer/Editor, Dreamer, Producer, Agent of Love, Film Lover, Writer of Screenplays and a Devoted Apostle to all things Ford Mustangs (the real ones with V8's!). Some of my favorite films include FIGHT CLUB, MOULIN ROUGE, THE DARK KNIGHT, STAR WARS alongside television shows such as SEINFELD, 24, SANFORD & SON and even the often loathed in the geek community BIG BANG THEORY. Outside of my three lives I live I also enjoy spending time with my girlfriend and our three girls (of the furry kind).

8 Responses to “If You Have The “Time”: In Time (Movie Review)”

  1. Gerard Iribe

    Remember, Andrew Niccol was the original Christopher Nolan. Never forget.

  2. Aaron Neuwirth

    Chris Nolan’s Al Pacino was actually good though…

  3. Gerard Iribe

    That’s because you don’t know what the hell you’re talking about, Aaron.

  4. Aaron Neuwirth

    Really, defending s1mone now…

  5. Sean Ferguson

    Don’t forget The Truman Show.

  6. Aaron Neuwirth

    Who forgot the Truman Show? That movie’s awesome, though not directed by Niccol, just written.

  7. credit repair company

    That’s because you don’t know what the hell you’re talking about, Aaron.

  8. Aaron Neuwirth

    I have the same feeling about your comment…