How much do we value time? I mean we always seem to think that what we don’t do today can wait till tomorrow. After all we have time. Imagine if how much money you had determined how much time you dad. Would you still be wasting it? Well if you can’t quite imagine the thought then you might want to check out the latest sci-fi Hollywood offering, In Time, starring Amanda Seyfried, Justin Timberlake, Cillian Murphy, Olivia Wilde, Matt Bomer, Alex Pettyfer, Johnny Galecki, and Vincent Kartheiser.
In a retro-future when the aging gene has been switched off, people stop aging at 25 years old. However, stamped on their arm is a clock of how long they will live. To avoid overpopulation, time has become the currency and the way people pay for luxuries and necessities.
This basically means that the rich can live forever, while the rest try to negotiate for immortality. A poor young man is accused of murder when he inherits a fortune of time from a dead upper-class man over a century old prior to his death. He is forced to go on the run from a corrupt FBI-like police force known as the “Timekeepers”, as well as from a hoodlum-like middle-aged Mob called the “Minutemen”, led by a senior citizen named Fortis, who is 75 years old.
It’s a scary thought having to constantly look at your arm to make sure your green digits don’t hit 0:00:00. In a system where literally time is money because time is the new currency, you can’t be declared bankrupt and start over. You finish your time means you die, no chance whatsoever.
Let’s examine the premise. In this movie we have a case where people have somehow genetically transformed time into a commodity for their own advantage. Poor people never have more than a day or two on their clock and so must continually work like slaves to prolong their life. Alternatively, the wealthy live like royalty with more than a century up their sleeve. Money buys you time and this time let’s you live forever.
I said it was a scary thought at the start of this verdict because relating it to the possibilities of real life. If you were in a job where time is money and you need that money to pay the bills and what not then you’d find yourself just like Justin Timberlake’s character, constantly running around in the course of work or in just general because he’s trying to save time. While on the other hand if you had all the money in the world then why rush, just take your time, enjoy your meals, sleep in and wake up at 1 in the afternoon, go for long vacations and buy everyone drinks. See what I’m getting at?
It’s a clever plot really and once you can find the connection between the fantasy of the movie and the realism of our everyday lives you can feel the weight of what the movie is driving at. You understand why the characters do what they do in the film.
There are a gazillion references to time and how precious it can be. That message comes through loud and clear but there are several storylines not wrapped up satisfactorily. These are the mote back-end storylines that are brought up but not explained and that was a little frustrating because it didn’t complete the movie. Don’t get me wrong, as much as i wasn’t sure what to make of the ending, i would have felt a whole lot better if the back-end storylines were explained.
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Just change time into money and really that’s what we’re all going through right now. Lucky for us bankruptcy doesn’t lead to death.
In Time opens in cinemas 26 October
Photos courtesy of 20th Century Fox
By Elliott Danker
©POPCulture Online 2011, All Rights Reserved