Safety Not Guaranteed

They do look dangerously hip don't they? I don't feel safe.
"What would you go back for?"

Hi everyone, welcome to today's edition of The Tagline! Today's Netflix offering is a movie about depressing losers who have no prospects on life, and stumble through an empty wasteland, fixated on the past. This is Safety Not Guaranteed, a film that debuted at the Sundance Film Festival in 2012. Starring Aubrey Plaza (who is really great in Parks and Rec!) as Darius Britt, an (unsurprisingly) anti-social and discontent college graduate who lives at home and interns at a magazine in Seattle. At the suggestion of Jeff (Jake Johnson, probably best known right now for his role as Nick on Zooey Deschanel's series New Girl), one of the magazine's writers  suggests they do a piece on a guy who has posted a wanted ad for a partner to go back in time with him. Jeff brings Darius and super nerd intern Arnau with him, and they investigate if the guy who made the ad is trolling the newspaper, or legitimately cocoa for coocoo poops.

He looks like a cool guy right? Look at that jean jacket.
Which of course he totally is. They discover that the ad was posted by Kenneth, a man who works at a grocery store, and is intensely paranoid. But that doesn't mean that he isn't being followed as we soon learn. We also learn that the only reason Jeff decided to follow this story at all is because an old girlfriend happens to live nearby, and he's looking to hook up with her again. What a swell guy (not really he's a total tool, but Jake Johnson makes a really funny falling apart 30-something toolbox). Kenneth is immediately put off by Jeff, and so they send in Darius, who is just weird enough to pass Kenneth's vetting process, and be allowed to begin undergoing "training" for his time travel mission, though he is still vague on details. Naturally as Darius gets to know Kenneth better, she becomes sympathetic towards him, because after all, who doesn't want to go back to a better, even slightly less shitty time in their life, when they didn't work at a grocery store with the increasing sense that death was creeping ever closer to their bedside? (ahem, sorry.) The big question on everyone's mind, inside the movie and out, is does this guy really have a time machine? I mean, sure he is a pretty odd guy, clearly living in denial of a lot of the bad stuff that happened in his life, but also he seems to have a lot of lasers and industrial or military grade tech he has pilfered, and he is clearly being followed by men who look to be government agents of some sort. It all gets you wondering if this guy is crazy, or crazy and also building a time machine. The answer? I'm not going to tell you, you have to watch the movie.

Aubrey really needs to stop dating morons and crazy people.
After watching several movies that were really not good yesterday (which I might talk about at a later date) this movie was a pleasant change in that it was actually pretty fun to watch. It's humorous but not campy, well cast and well acted, and overall very convincing and real, despite the bizarre premise and general weirdness. Even setting aside time machines, there is a general theme here of looking back, of trying to find something that you lost and reconnect, and I personally can relate to that, and I think that most people who have lived any kind of life can too. That is to say, there is something very human about the whole plot that really endears it to the viewer, and the script is snappy enough to really sell it. If I have one criticism, I feel like the whole thing with Jeff and his ex-lady was sort of abrupt and unresolved, but I guess that could have very well been the point.

If I could go back in time, I would certainly make some different decisions, but I unfortunately do not have a time machine. I would still watch this movie though, it was pretty good, and you should too! That's all for today, I'll catch you all on the flip side or something!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Project Wonderful Ad