Which Came First? Predestination is a time travel movie like no other, and that is an incredibly refreshing thing when the genre is saturated with similar or poorly conceived versions of the same paradox over and over again. This is a film that takes a time travel paradox that isn’t typically shared and which I haven’t personally seen put to film before and weaves a beautiful and intricate story that builds to a well-earned resolution and new beginning. I don’t dare share too much about the plot as that would spoil the fun, but for those who engross themselves in time travel stories on the regular they’re sure to see the “twists” coming a mile away like I did. The only thing is, that’s not a bad thing. It’s all executed so wonderfully that you just enjoy the story being told, regardless of any reveals hitting hard or not.
All You Zombies. Based on a short story by Robert A. Heinlein, the film follows Ethan Hawk as a temporal agent whose job is to travel back in time to correct wrongs committed. Specifically, he’s searching for a bomber that will inevitably kill thousands of individuals on a specific date if not put a stop to. In the now we have newspaper articles recounting the events, so the temporal agents can go to dates before these events and track the bomber down before the mayhem ensues. But do not be fooled, this is not an action adventure of any kind. This is actually a precisely paced drama filled with in-depth character development and meaningful moments and progression. It starts like a film like this would typically start, and then you’re thrown for a long bout of exposition for what seems like a seemingly innocuous character. This is where the film throws you for a loop, and not the time traveling kind. You care about the story, about the life of this character, and you forget you were expecting to see Ethan Hawk jump back and forth like a time crime agent.
“But, you do have a purpose.” The writing, directing, acting, and overall production are all on point. This doesn’t seem like an expensive movie, and it’s not a big extravaganza to warrant it. The story being told is told with no more or no less than what is required. Everyone gives phenomenal performances, specifically Sarah Snook who is truly something magnificent. This is all hers, without the dedication and craft, she provides it would all fall apart to something much less than it is. This is one of the top time traveling films in past years, and will surely be on the list of bests. It deserves it, because it takes something we’ve seen time and time again, and provides it in a new and interesting way like we’ve never seen. Or maybe we have, or maybe we haven’t, yet…again…
A clever and unique spin on an uncommon time travel paradox. Adept direction, smart writing, and excellent performances make this a story worth watching again and again..,