Saturday, February 4, 2012

In Time on DVD

I really enjoyed In Time for its concept. If you missed this one in theaters, it just came out a few days ago on DVD.

It's a world where everyone looks 25, but how long you've been 25 is the question. Time is the new currency. You might have 24 hours to live. You might have one thousand years. You might pay four minutes of your life for coffee. You might pay two months to buy a hotel room for one night. Or you might pay a year to cross the border from a poor time zone into a rich time zone. But when you get there, don't run; life in the richer time zones is more leisurely, so they'll know you don't belong.

Justin Timberlake plays Will Salas, a guy who lives day to day, always hours away from death, waiting for the next paycheck of time. In one night, his life changes, and he finds himself with over one hundred years of time on his clock. But where he comes from, that much time is dangerous, practically a death sentence. So, he heads for richer time zones. But the Time Keepers, the police force, are on his tail to make sure the status quo never changes. Will, a guy who's willing to give time away, is a dangerous man to those who horde it.

This concept is on par with the ideas behind the movie Inception. Unfortunately, it wasn't executed as brilliantly. In addition to the somewhat of a misnomer title (should be more like out of time), there are a few plot holes, some major scene skipping to get to the bigger plot points, and some minor believability issues. For instance, anyone can steal another person's time. In fact, people "fight" for time by holding each other's wrists, similar to arm wrestling. The person on top somehow sucks away the other person's time. I, myself, haven't tried grabbing a person's wrist and trying to turn it over and stay on top, but realistically, I don't think that type of arm wrestling even works. You try it, though; maybe I'm wrong. But, for the sake of the movie, I suppose it looks cool, especially with a person's clock embedded right into his forearm for anyone to see, and this manner of wrestling provides a cool background story about Will's dad, which, in turn, heightens the tension in a later scene. It is pretty intense to watch someone's clock tick down to two seconds as people gamble not just with time but with their lives.

I love science fiction like this, even if it isn't perfect. This sci-fi thriller is rated PG-13 for partial nudity (skinny dipping where a girl's backside is shown and a scene with a girl in lingerie on a bed), language (I believe the F-word is used once), and violence. If you go on, there's a detailed description of the sex and nudity in the movie, but it's wrong. Or maybe whoever wrote that saw an uncut version. From what I remember of the bed scene, it's cut short before anything can happen by the arrival of the police. The murder, mainly by the stealing of time, is possibly more disturbing than the other things for which this movie is rated PG-13. It's just such an odd way to die, so quickly; humanity becomes even more fragile than it really is. (Though, the irony of the situation is that we actually do have only so much time on this earth; we just don't have it displayed on our arms for all to see.)

It's a clever little movie with entertaining performances by Justin Timberlake, Amanda Seyfried, and Cillian Murphy, whose face just lends itself to creepy characters. I'd be careful about letting kids watch this, but otherwise, if you enjoy science fiction, I recommend this one!

Three stars.

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