Review: Time Freak (2018)

Time Freak (2018)

Directed by: Andrew Bowler | 100 minutes | comedy, drama | Actors: Asa Butterfield, Sophie Turner, Skyler Gisondo, Will Peltz, Aubrey Reynolds, Jillian Joy, Joseph Park, Caden J. Gregoire, Cassie J. Gregoire, Cassie Williams, Coral Chambers, Joey Miyashima

Stillman (Asa Butterfield) and Debby (Sophie Turner) are a nice couple, although they are very different. Stillman studies physics and is serious about his future; Debby doesn’t have a clear-cut goal in her life yet and is just muddling along. After a while, the two seem to grow apart too much and Debby decides one bad day that she wants to break up. But Stillman has a secret: he invented a time machine and can go back in time to correct the mistakes he’s made. Stillman’s best friend Evan (Skyler Gisondo) is drawn into the conspiracy and also gets a chance to improve his life (currently dominated by getting high and avoiding hard studying).

‘Time Freak’ by Andrew Bowler, who also wrote the screenplay, is a cute romantic drama with fantasy elements about a nerdy character who can’t get his luck with such a fantastic girlfriend. It makes sense that he is completely overwhelmed by her decision to end the relationship. Stillman firmly believes that they are made for each other; not only can he never get a better girlfriend, he is the best for her too. So if he has the ability to save their relationship, who is he to morally question that? It is also clear that Evan goes all the way with him in his frenzied plan – after some initial struggles. Make everyone such a friend!

The success of ‘Time Freak’ is mainly due to the charming cast. Asa Butterfield and Sophie Turner are an endearing couple and Skyler Gisondo is a funny sidekick, who really wants you to win his ultimate frisbee match. In addition, later in the story, he also forms the moral anchor for Stillman, which he does seem to need. As for the laws of physics, don’t think too much about it. If you take for granted that the time machine works the way it does, and that Stillman’s invention has certain limitations (which don’t apply at another time), you’ll get a long way with this film.

What also works well is that the film is less predictable than you would expect at first glance. The moral objections that simply depend on the fact that you can’t just determine someone’s whole life without anyone knowing about it, are handled in a neat way. This film could not have had a better ending.

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