Monday, 28 March 2016

I've Just Seen: Predestination (2014)

Predestination (2014)

Directors: Michael Spierig, Peter Spierig

This is the type of film Australia rarely produces: slick science-fiction, set in another country (in this case, America). We meet Ethan Hawke's barkeep returning to work after an horrific accident that has required major facial reconstruction. One night he meets a man called John (Sarah Snook) who promises to tell the most amazing story, which starts with the line 'When I was a little girl ...' From here the movie becomes a time-travelling, identity slipping mystery.

Predestination's pace and tone is what stops the film's story from collapsing in a pile of incomprehensibility, as well as a brilliant performance from Sarah Snook, whose John looks a lot like Leonardo DiCaprio. There are few pauses in the action, so the audience doesn't have time to say 'Hang on, what?' Instead we are whisked away to the next section. The serious, dark tone also means that some of the more bizarre ideas don't stand out as much.

It is hard not to talk about the film without spoiling the story, but the big twist at the end was not as surprising as it could have been, and you a more likely not to have reached it because you were busy trying to keep up with the timeline. While far from perfect, it is a neat thriller with a great deal of style, and as stated previously, well worth seeing purely for Sarah Snook.


  1. As a fan of Robert Heinlein it was great to see one of his stories brought to the screen. And the story All You Zombies may be the most mind-bending time travel story I've ever read. The bomber subplot isn't in the original story, but it helps address the one thing the movie had to do that the book didn't - show the characters.

    1. Watching the film did certainly make me want to read the short story, largely to see how it moved around the timeline (something which the film did struggle with somewhat).