Reviewed By

Christopher Armstead
Well… there it is Spierig Brothers… my mind is blown.  Whether or not this movie 'Predestination' will blow your mind or not, dear reader, I cannot say.  But we will be very careful in describing this film to you as not ruin any potential mind blowing opportunities which may await you, should you choose to take the challenge of this film on.

Our film starts with a bit of action, as we follow a guy who has gone back in time to finally try to stop this cretin known as the Fizzle Bomber.  I know… awful name, but what can you do.  The op doesn't go well, there is an explosion and this guy we are following is severely burned, but he does manage to make it back to his current time which is the future or something.  I can't remember.  But I do remember that he needed a bit of reconstructive facial surgery, and now he looks just like Ethan Hawke. 

The character Ethan Hawke plays is a temporal agent, meaning he uses this fancy time machine given to him by his boss Mr. Robertson (Noah Taylor) to stop future crimes from happening, and he's quite good at it saving many lives, except for that cursed Fizzle Bomber who has been eluding him for years.  But no worries, Mr. Taylor thinks he has a line on where this Fizzle Bomber is in the time space continuum, and sends his agent back to 1976 where he should be making an appearance.

Now the movie slows down, and here's where it gets a little strange because where we started out with an action sequence and this Sci-Fi basis, now 'Predestination' shifts gears completely.  Our Agent works at some sleazy bar as a bartender when this dude walks into the bar.  This dude (Sarah Snook) is looking a little strange to us because he does look kind of effeminate, but the bartender strikes up a conversation and while this dude is one bitter person, he has a story to tell.
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And thus this is the bulk of the film as this dude tells The Bartender the story of his life, one that began with him being girl, and the awful, awful things that this poor person has experienced up to this point in his misbegotten life.  Is any of this going to help The Bartender find the elusive Fizzle Bomber?  Well…

What we have here my friends is a Time Travel Movie.  Time Travel Movies are strange because there are rules that have to be acknowledged, kind of, but not necessarily followed, not really, because time travel doesn't exist.  The Speirig brothers have taken whatever rules we might think that might be in place for time travel, and totally flips it on its head.  Or I guess Robert A. Heinlen's short story 'All You Zombies' flipped time travel on its head since this is what this movie is based off of.

When the movie starts off, with its nicely realize action sequence, complete with a bomb ticking down to triple zero, then we follow that up at the futuristic place where the shadowy agency that is governing our time travel agents, it looks like we are in for a bravura, science fiction, action filled cinematic experience.  But then 'Predestination' shifts its tone and to be completely honest it's a little disconcerting because this truly becomes a different kind of movie than what we were expecting. 

It does take a little time to readjust from our action / Sci-Fi thought process, to what is essentially a two-man play featuring a couple of people chatting in bar, but on the strength of the performances from Ethan Hawke and Sarah Snook, it doesn't take long to become absorbed with what these two are discussing. 

Then movie shifts tones yet again as this odd looking little dude in the bar begins flashbacking through his rather odd  tale, which of course has the audience… or at least this audience member… wondering what any of this has to do with Fizzle bombers and time travel and whatnot. 

But not to worry as everything comes right back around in a nice, relatively neat bundle.  More or less.  It's the 'more or less' that's kind of mind blowing.  I mean there's no confusion in the narrative, everything that we've seen is pretty clear and eventually it will all make sense, but it is the kind of thing that will certainly prompt some discussion.  How could this thing that we have watched even be possible?  Of course it's not possible, not in any way, shape or form because Time Travel itself is not possible, but in the scope of the film… I don't know.

But is 'Predestination' a good movie?  Yeah… I think so.  It is tightly directed, cleverly written, logically illogical, and finely acted, especially by young Sarah Snook.  And it's different.  That, all by itself, almost makes it worth seeing because we don't have the chance to say that very often.
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