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Out of all genres science-fiction is probably one of the tougher ones to tackle for film-makers. It's not only hard to standout but it's also hard to come up with something that works out as convincing and engaging enough as well as imaginative and creative. It's even harder when you don't have much of a budget to spend and have to mostly rely on the story and acting, rather than the special-effects and spectacle. In that regard I really respect this movie and consider it to be a quite good and successful one.

Good news is that this movie is fine and watchable, but bad news is that it's hardly anything that memorable or original. I'm not even going to attempt to name some of the movies this one is 'borrowing' from, simply because there are far too many to name. The problem with it is that it isn't doing it in a creative enough way of its own. It isn't ever hiding the fact how heavily it got influenced by a bunch of other, more popular, genre films. On the one hand it's good how it isn't trying to hide it but it at the same time definitely goes at the expense of its own credibility. It even really took me out of the movie at times.

The movie overall still manages to tell a decent story though. It's well written, multilayered and well through out, even though the movie definitely becomes a bit too hard to follow at times, mostly due to its 'science' elements. It does make the movie somewhat less fun and interesting to watch at times but I absolutely never felt bored of fed up with things. It doesn't take things too far, as some genre movies that take themselves far too serious can do.

It's also true that the movie does make things needlessly hard for itself as well though. It's not always the best told movie and the fact that it involves time traveling doesn't make the movie any simpler en more pleasant to follow. Things aren't always told chronologically and different time-lines keep clashing with each other. There are a few too many needless distractions in it, that in the end just don't add enough to the story. Not all of the developments and twists are as convincing as the other though. Perhaps it's also true that the movie thinks it's being more clever than it in fact truly is. I wouldn't necessarily call the movie a pretentious one, after all, it's never going too far with it, but it does have some obvious pretentious tendencies, with its visuals, as well as with its story.

It's low budget is also obvious at times. It isn't the most slick looking movie and the effects aren't entirely convincing. Also the acting feels lacking, with the exception of a few good and convincing performances, for instance by Bruce Davison and Susan Blakely. Just a few things here and there that constantly make you aware of the fact that you're watching a low-budget production, made by a still mostly inexperienced crew.

Overall, I still was really impressed with this movie as well. I was surprised how well constructed it was and how it managed to keep my interest, despite some obvious weaknesses. It's far from the best or most thought provoking genre movies you will ever see, but it definitely is a decent genre attempt, that's well worth watching.

6/10

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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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