For most people time moves in a linear fashion and we live one moment to the next. Some might find that hard enough, but imagine if you had a nonlinear concept of time and lived moments out of sequence.
Found in Time takes place in an “altered” present-day New York City where psychics are real and use their abilities to work as street vendors. They are closely monitored by the Psychological Police Corps (Psychcops), who use their positions to harass and bully vendors. Written and directed by Arthur Vincie, Time follows a “collector” named Chris (played by MacLeod Andrews). He compulsively picks up everyday items like pens or stones and sells them to people, and each object has meaning for someone in the future.
If I had to picture a city where psychic street vendors were a normal thing, it would definitely be Manhattan, probably set up next to Halal carts. Psychics using their abilities in forced labor is what I imagine the world would be like if the mutants from X-Men were rounded up by the government. Personally, I was most impressed with RJ (played by Derek Morgan) and his coffee that gives people “humility” and “courage”. That would definitely get me started on a regular caffeine diet and Starbucks would be a thing of the past.
Unfortunately, Chris’s ability causes him to experience time out sequence, essentially slipping between the past, present and future. When Chris murders two Psychcops in the future, he has to try and alter the past to prevent it from happening. But the time slips make it hard for Chris to know the future from the present and cause the events of the murder to change but not for the better. Chris’s personal life also goes into a tailspin. For instance, he proposes to his girlfriend, Jina (played by Kelly Sullivan), and she gladly accepts, but later the scene repeats and she turns him down flat.
The film is an intriguing mix of a time travel adventure and a classic murder mystery. But what makes it unique is the focus isn’t on who committed the murder but who will end up doing it. Changing the timeline reconfigures the events surrounding the murder, altering who killed them and why they did. The question becomes whether or not Chris can keep the murdering from happening or at least prevent someone else for committing the crime. When taking into account who the victims are, you also find yourself wondering if they didn’t deserve their fate.
Overall, I found the film to be a very enjoyable sci-fi drama. I liked how jarring some of the time flashes were, it made me feel like I was experiencing the confusion Chris dealt with trying to figure out where he was. However, I was hoping to learn more of the backstory about how these psychics first came around and how this new order was established. But that’s just me. I always want to know everything I can about these kind of things when I watch a movie.
With its interesting mix of sci-fi and murder mystery film noir, Time will attract fans of both genres. To learn more about the film and to rent or buy it online, check out the website here.
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