High concept but ultimately meaningless, Justin Timberlake stars in Andrew Niccol’s latest alternate world sci-fi jaunt, that at the centre has a spectacularly intriguing notion, where time is the only currency.
Time is earned and spent and displayed on the arm in good old futuristic neon green, and at the grand old age of twenty five the countdown begins for all.
JT stars as Will Salas, a time pauper, but when he is gifted a lifetime by a suicidal bloke, JT looks to make hay and bring down the rich. Even in a world where time is the only currency people get time rich and the spread of wealth is controlled across ‘time zones’.
Little time-rich girl Sylvia (Amanda Seyfried) gets taken for a ride when she is inadvertently kidnapped, but questions what it means to live a life when privilege only creates a repressed immortality.
JT is amiable enough, but even with stubble doesn’t convince as being gruff or tough enough as an action lead.
Cillian Murphy is decent as ‘The timekeeper’- the time policeman; tasked with keeping time controlled; offering mostly pointless chase but always adequately captivating to keep the interest going.
The initially fascinating central concept gives way to tedious foot and car chases that thrill little, action is unoriginal and insipid.
The notion of immortality through the accumulation of time wealth works well; if you are wealthy you have all the time in the world or you have to earn time if you’re poor, but how long does anyone really want to live if they never truly live?
Sadly anymore intelligent or meaningless philosophies than this are lost to poor execution of a fantastic high concept with clichéd acting and characterisation, poor production values and a failing in creating a truly believable other world or future dystopia. It’s hard to gauge whether the LA ‘river’ and streets are meant to double as some kind of future world or alternate reality. It’s completely shallow.
‘In time’ could have been a meaningful commentary on power, control and life but a captivating concept is never done justice owing greatly to an overwhelming feeling of turgid emptiness.
Watched on Blu-Ray