Time Lapse is a delightful little thriller which by far surpasses its minuscule reach and turns into being a film which is not only thought provoking but also lingers in your mind long after it is over. We have seen films which speak of the future and the genre has its share of sci-fi as well as dramatic offerings. What we have here is a well thought out thriller which not so much concentrates on the science of it all but looks more into the effect that it brings about in the lives of three different individuals. The film hardly takes any time to get to its point and as it progresses it works like a slow fuse which not only burns efficiently but also culminates in an effective climax.
Callie (Danielle Panabaker), Fin (Matt O’Leary) and Jasper (George Finn) are friends who share the same apartment. While Jasper is a degenerate gambler who bets and loses money on dog races, Fin is unable to put his thoughts on the canvas and stares endlessly on an empty canvas. Callie seems to have a life and she is in love with Fin but Fin remains somewhat estranged from her as if he has lost interest in her. The trio discovers a strange machine in their neighbor’s house whom they incidentally find dead. This machine has the ability to take pictures of one of their rooms to which it is pointed exactly 24 hours in the future.
Upon their discovery, the trio initially uses the machine for making financial gains and artistic exploits. Soon enough the machine starts churning sinister images and it’s only a matter of time before their lives go haywire and it becomes difficult to differentiate the future from the present. While the trio tries to bring their life back on track, a series of murders are committed by Jasper who now believes that he has the control of his life as he can see the future. Callie starts finding it difficult to choose between which side to be on. Fin cannot help but feel that the love of his life whom he had ignored for all this while, to be tilting towards his friend and room-mate.
As the premise might have suggested, the film is pure drama with some dose of action and mayhem thrown in. You can also call it an astute thriller. The film makes an impact because of two reasons. Firstly the characters and the situations are well thought out and leave little room for any logical errors. Secondly the performances hold on to your attention and make you take sides with the characters. The story twists ferociously towards the end bringing in some unexpected turns which further increases the shock value. Like the machine itself which the trio never tries to decipher, the three individuals are a bag of secrets. No one is what he or she seems like and as the situations change the reality behind the individuals come to light.
Danielle Panabaker is the pick of the lot. Her portrayal of a confused girl who is torn between the man she loves and a guy who seems to wield all the power as well as the might to protect her is interesting to watch. She especially does well in the emotional scenes involving certain matters like the one in which she is caught smooching Jasper, the scene where a photograph reveals her and Jasper making out and the climax. Matt O’Leary plays a dazed Fin who first enjoys the existence of the machine primarily because of the fact that it gives wings to his art but soon realizes that the very machine might be the one to take away the love of his life. George Finn as Jasper is the second best as far as I am concerned. He starts off as a cocky and somewhat sweet devil but as the film progresses his character grows grey and eventually black. His transformation sets the mood and feel of the film.
Time Lapse is an entertaining thriller which you might want to see more than once just to be able to sink in all the material. It is the kind of film that you might not have heard off before but leaves you thoroughly entertained and satisfied. It is one of those hidden gems that you might just refer to a friend.