Hoping to make score some money and possibly save the world, whimsical time-traveler Casper (Rhys Darby) has traveled to the 21st century. Despite frequently saying, “I have a plan,” it becomes apparent that Casper has no plan for the present or the future. Finding himself alone and unprepared for the present day, Casper befriends Holly (Gabrielle Graham), a punk rocker dreaming of an easy, stress-free life. After convincing Holly he is from the future, Casper offers Holly a chance to have the coasting-by life she has always dreamed of. He gives her the winning lottery numbers and sports champions, but she cannot use the information or money to help the world, just to live comfortably. Originally a 2013 short film by the same name, Relax, I’m From the Future is the latest and quirkiest look at multi-verse/time travel storytelling.
Three months later, Holly is living the easy life she dreamed of, building a network of lesbian bookies rigging the system of sports betting and lotteries across the globe. Casper is busy collecting future artifacts and obsessing over Percy (Julian Richings), a local diner owner who, in the future, becomes a cult icon for his nihilistic cartoons. Everything is going according to Caspers’s “plan,” Holly is making money, and he can finally get to that whole “saving the world” phase. But is saving the world ever simple? And when a homicidal fellow time-traveler, Doris (Janine Theriault), is hunting you down, simplicity goes out the door.
“Hoping to make score some money and possibly save the world…”
Rhys Darby, recognizable from Our Flag Means Death and Flight of the Conchords, brings his offbeat, quirky style in every line of Relax, I’m From the Future. Darby makes Casper feel like the most incompetent reincarnation from Doctor Who and makes the film all the more hilarious. Gabrielle Graham is excellent as the witty, pseudo-slacker Holly. Standing alone in each performance suits the characters well. However, Darby and Graham’s chemistry elevates the humor and stakes of his wacky time-traveling extravaganza. Janine Theriault has such a prominent introduction as Doris. Yet, the character does not receive the additional build-up (or screen time) to make her the menacing villain promised in her opening.
Writer and Director Luke Higginson has a strong premise and even more substantial laughs throughout Relax, I’m From the Future. The film is bursting with witty jokes and punk rock energy, primed for an audience fully engaged in the world of IFC-esque indie comedies. Some jokes don’t land, and a few too many sub-plots detract from the overall narrative. Still, Higginson organically develops the two main characters, paying off each arc in a satisfying climax. Even with some uneven sub-plots, the main plot features several fun twists. Holly and Casper’s constant hijinx, especially concerning Percy’s future, are some of the best moments in the film. And make Relax, I’m From the Future a must-watch for fans of Darby’s other work.
The leads in Relax, I’m From the Future are outstanding. Graham’s witty, skeptical Holly is the perfect foil for the nonsensical Casper. In every scene, Higginson makes the film his own, often using split screen to contrast or stylize the banter between the two leads. There are too many subplots, and Doris could use more lead-up. But, the film has irreverent charm for days. It’s funny, quotable, and unique while constantly finding new ways to feed off the leads’ performances. Higginson has built upon his original short film into a fleshed-out feature more than worth a watch to fans of sci-fi comedies.
For more information about Relax, I’m From the Future, visit the Blue Fox Entertainment official website.
"…the latest and quirkiest look at multi-verse/time travel storytelling. "