What if you could be signaled the very minute you made eye contact with your soul mate for the first time—not in a wholly biological way, that is. What if there was technology, a timer, that could be implanted into your wrist that counts down the days : hours : minutes : seconds until the day you are to meet your soul mate? And what if, when your eyes met, an alarm in said timer chimed a loud reassuring yes (or a terrifying yes)?
In TiMER such technology exists. It is fairly new, but has rapidly become a raging success, proving an accuracy too good to pass up. Unfortunately for Oona (Emma Caulfield) her TiMER has yet too show a time. Her soul mate hasn’t had his or her TiMER installed and the film begins with her dragging her 1 month relationship into a shop to remedy the problem of his “virgin wrist.” When that doesn’t turn out well (again), she is near the end of her rope, and a series of conflicts send her over the edge and into a heated affair with a younger man who has 4 months left of waiting for his “one.”
(upper l) Michelle Borth (Steph), Desmond Harrington (Dan), John Patrick Amedori (Mikey), Emma Caulfield (Oona), and Writer/Director Jac Schaeffer.
Jac Schaeffer writes and directs her way through 99 minutes exploring via multiple characters and cleverly plotted scenarios questions like : If you could know who your soul mate was, would you? And what effects does the knowing and not knowing have on your life? What is the guarantee worth and how does it affect your behavior? There are several combinations, choices, outcomes, and intersections; some predictable, many often painful; all interwoven into a highly palatable story.
TiMER is Streaming on Netflix (presently) and I believe it makes many “favorites of sci-fi” lists. It is a wonderful romantic film, quirky indie comedy, and family drama embraced by the science fiction that is quickly (and not necessarily satisfactorily explained) during the opening credits. The music in the film is charming; some of the repetitive elements (Oona waiting here and there, or running circles) and the sharp wit (via the step-sister Steph) as well. I couldn’t say much about the film wows, except for the agility in the writing and the smooth delivery. The acting is good, the characters engaging (if not sometimes bitchy or coarse), the story entertaining, and the discussions after worth a bottle of wine with friends and/or your significant other.
*you’ll note that the MPAA rating for the film is R, there is coarse language and sexual content. If you’ve an audience member younger than 15-16, I would suggest screening.
written and directed by Jac Schaeffer.
Produced by Jennifer Glynn, Rikki Jarrett, Jac Schaeffer
Editing by Peter Samet
Starring: Emma Caulfield, Michelle Borth, John Patrick Amedori, Desmond Harrington, JoBeth Williams, Kali Rocha
Music by Andrew Kaiser
Cinematography : Harris Charalambous
Running Time 99 minutes.
Rated R for language.
Neil Genzlinger’s NY Times Review.