Meewella | Critic

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Tag: Chris O'Dowd

QuickView: Frequently Asked Questions About Time Travel (2009)

Frequently Asked Questions About Time Travel quad poster

“Time travel. It’ll turn your brain into spaghetti if you let it. Best not to think about it.”

Ray

O’Dowd’s opening lines serve as a warning that this a ride rather than engaging with time travel in any cerebral manner. Unabashedly inspired by Shaun of the Dead, the set up — three nerdy friends accidentally time travelling through the toilets at their local pub — could easily have been a rejected pitch for the Three Flavours Cornetto trilogy. What FAQ About Time Travel doesn’t have is Edgar Wright’s creative cinematic flair, its visibly low budget lending the air of TV comedy. The script and characters are affable enough to entertain, though only O’Dowd and Faris are able to draw any substance from roles with little depth beyond the extent of their nerdiness. The result is is a sufficiently amusing Britcomedy that won’t answer your questions about time travel and lacks the inventiveness to elevate it above the constraints of its budget.

6/10

QuickView: Juliet, Naked (2018)

“I may look like a nice, well-adjusted English lady in a sensible cardigan, but these days it’s a thin veneer, and it’s started to crack.”

Annie Platt

Based on the book by Nick Hornby, the film’s first hurdle is the preposterous premise of a woman inadvertantly connecting online with the rockstar recluse with whom her partner is obsessed. Provided you can suspend your disbelief, however, there are some great performances to enjoy in this light British romantic drama. Rose Byrne swiftly earns the audience’s sympathy with gentle charm, whilst Ethan Hawke shows aspects of his performance in the Before trilogy. The real theme is less romance than how we respond to regret either by remaining tied to the past or by looking to future possibility. Juliet, Naked may not offer any deep answers, but it is enjoyable to watch unfold and ends with a hopeful tone whilst avoiding the saccharine endings that plague most romcoms.

7/10

"A film is a petrified fountain of thought."

(CC) BY-NC 2003-2023 Priyan Meewella

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