Of all the genres out there, there are a lot of great mixes. And there are plenty of mixes that are downright disastrous by comparison. Perhaps one of the harder mixes out there are trying to intermingle science fiction with the romantic comedy. It’s only been done once that I can see, in a great movie called Run Robot Run! that I saw a couple years back.
And now, someone will try a second run at that particular brass ring with the movie TiMER, a movie that the folks at Tribeca sent that asks the question, what would you do if you knew when your soulmate would show up? TiMERs, you see, are devices that are implanted in the skin of the “dominant hand”, a development that freaks some people out to no end. And once the device is in place, a four-entry countdown clock starts–months, days, hours, minutes–to show you how long you’ve got until you meet that special someone. However, if your TiMER is blank, it means that one special someone doesn’t have a TiMER of their own. And that’s the dilemma our heroine Oona is facing–her “one” as they’re called has no TiMER. So while Oona is hunting for TiMERless men to get them patched into the network, she has an unexpected meeting with a supermarket clerk much younger than her…who also has a TiMER. And his TiMER is four months away. So will Oona deliberately pursue a man not her one? Or is there a possibility of a mistake?
You are, effectively, looking at a sci-fi rom-com here. People are out looking for love, finding it, sometimes in the wrong places, and are doing so with the help of implanted biomechanical implements.
This intermingling of genres is wildly unexpected, and thus, wholly unique to the marketplace. As I’ve said, I’ve only seen one other title like this, and that was a small-scale indie release.
Okay, so we’ve established it’s unique, but how is it? I’ll call it all right, mostly because I’m not a huge fan of the romantic comedy to begin with. I’ve held my nose and crammed a few down before, but I’ve generally not enjoyed them. And this one, in grand romantic comedy fashion, will ignore countless plot holes. What if your “one” is on the other side of the planet? Is it conceivable that one could never actually MEET their “one”? What about people whose “ones” died early? Why don’t people just advertise somewhere “Hey! I just zeroed out! Have you met me lately? Show up for a free engagement ring!”?
All these questions and more will never be answered. But what we do get is a decent romantic comedy with a little sci-fi edge. Rom-com fans will eat this up with spoons and those forced to watch along might well enjoy the mechanics of it, even if they’ll likely be too focused on the holes.
The Screenhead Ten Scale hands this impressive, if lacking, mix of genres a seven out of ten for sheer ambition. It’s far from perfect but it’s got some great points.