By Admin | December 7, 2005

Adam Moses has a couple of problems. An informant provides him with a mountain of evidence implicating a mob boss, Tony Tachinardi, in the murder of the mayor. Tony shows up at Adam’s office and offers a hefty sum of money for Adam to turn over the evidence. Adams is a righteous lawyer, if there is such a thing, and declines the money. The next day Adam goes to a rooftop for a meeting about the case and is shot. He wakes up moments later unharmed but with a different problem. He is trapped reliving the same hour over and over again. He is able to move about freely but at 1:00 PM the world around reverts back to noon. Once he works this out, the movie switches from film noir to an existential mystery. What happened to Adam and what does it mean?

He begins by torturing the mob boss who put out a hit on him, Tony reveals that he used a faceless hit man named Ouroberos. His hunt for the elusive hit man who might have done this to him leads him to Rebecca a mysterious woman who is also repeating the same hour of time and Lasloe the great, a ranting drug addled madman. Around cycle 1000 Adam’s mental state starts to slide a little. It seems that Adam wasn’t always righteous, and though he is a good little catholic lawyer now the demons in his psyche are creeping back. One day he beats a homeless man to death and realizes that his actions have no consequences, the homeless man will come back to life in an hour.

This conundrum occupies the middle of film, since there are no consequences to his actions can you really qualify an action as good or evil. Any damage you might do is undone in less than an hour as is any good. Adam rescues his friend Vaughn from a disastrous poker game, knowing that if he doesn’t Vaughn will kill himself. Adam discusses this problem at great length with the other characters, it’s interesting but ultimately over played. He finally unravels the Earth bound plot that led to his demise and while it’s difficult to string all the pieces together coherently, it has some compelling surprises. His terrestrial problem solved, he never really learns why he’s trapped in limbo and is left to accept that he is responsible for this reality.

On the technical side it’s a very well made film. Shot digitally, in black and white, the movie looks great and even uses excellent effects to show the regression of time. The acting is good, the editing stands out and Ikimi has gathered very talented people to work on the film. Unfortunately the writing bogs down the film, when it could be nimble and thought provoking it’s preachy and overdone. The compelling crime noir that precipitates Adam’s trip to limbo is buried under the interesting but over done existential monologues and a score that is probably good on it’s own, but a distraction to the movie. Like ‘Primer’ and ‘Donnie Darko’ the movie examines how we shape reality and define what is right and wrong. It’s not Alfred Hitchcock’s version of ‘Groundhog Day’, but it’s a well made and thought provoking flick.

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