Saturday, February 25, 2012

Cinema Saturday

In Time
20th Century Fox
January 31, 2012
PG-13; 109 minutes
IMDb; buy on Amazon; Amazon Instant Video



Time is money. We've all heard the phrase, imagine if it were true. In 2011's In Time starring Justin Timberlake and Amanda Seyfried, each citizen has a life expectancy of 25 years, after that they are given one year - only that year probably won't be a year. Once you turn twenty-five, a clock on your arm starts to count down.

If you're like most of the populations, you're forced to use that year as currency. To pay your rent, to take the bus, to buy groceries, to get a cup of coffee. You'll get paid in time, too, but never quite enough. You'll be literally living day to day. Or hour to hour. Maybe minute to minute.

If you're among the wealthy, if you live outside of the 'ghetto' you're more likely to see your clock go up from the second you turn twenty-five. You'll have more time on your hands than you know what to do with. You can live forever - barring an act of violence.

An ultimate example of income inequality and after Will Salas (Timberlake) finds himself wrongfully accused of murder just after his mother dies - or times out - he's not going to let it stand anymore. Now, on the run and with a hostage (Seyfriend), too - Will searches for a way to make things more equal, more fair.


I love when a movie is smart. I've been saying that I wished this film was based on a novel but after seeing it, I"m almost happy that it isn't. Not because I wouldn't love to see the story novelized, but because it's so rare that an original screenplay is this unique and intelligent.

All of the different 'time' phrases that we use day in and day out without a second thought - time zones, time share, etc - are given completely new meaning in In Time. Losing an hour when switching time zones means almost nothing, but In Time makes you wonder what if it actually meant, literally, losing an hour of your life.

This Robin Hood-esque tale is really much more thoughtful than I expected. We get just enough insight into the characters to care about them and connect with them, enough that it adds to not detracts from the thriller, sci-fi story line.

Any film that can take common every day things - especially one so absolutely every day as time - and put a new spin on how you think about it, is absolutely worth seeing.

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