*** This review contains time travelling spoilers ***
A partly funded experiment creates a wormhole, that the lead scientist hopes will usher humanity into a new scientific frontier.
Independent writer/director Jacob Gentry’s Synchronicity is a sci-fi noir that attempts, on a very low budget, to channel Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner. Gentry is smart enough not to disguise or apologise for low budget short comings and like the recent Automata and The Machine it doesn’t pretend to be anything it’s not, avoiding the pitfalls of many recent low budget with ‘named actor’ science fiction films.
Michael Ironside extended cameo as Klaus, a domineering, super-rich businessman who’s bankrolling Jim’s experiment is excellent and unintentionally upstages actor Chad McKnight’s best quirky effort as a Jeffery Combs-like Jim. Abby Brianne Davis does her best to out do Sean Young’s Rachel as a nonchalant woman who may or may not be assisting Jim or Klaus. Davis really nails this curious absorbing role thanks to a good performance and fitting dialogue.
The budget does enough to create a doomy atmosphere with a dystopian stylishness thanks to some interesting locations, special effects and Ben Lovetts’ score unashamedly reminiscent of Vangelis.
Complications arise at once the time travel begins and with only a handful of characters Gentry keeps the viewer engaged with some intriguing narrative twists. It’s clear the viewer is on low budget feature ride, the minimal psychological and symbolic flower wormhole gives it an artsy Kubrick and Tony Scott feel, without overblown special effects, that may give sub-genre fans a buzz.
Its very much a character piece. When Jim goes through the wormhole proving the viability of time travel it becomes a doppelgänger tale akin to the effective Nacho Vigalondo’s Timecrimes, incidentally also not reliant on flashy effects.
If time travelling speculative science fiction with video calls, heels, high rise buildings and shafts of light is your thing, you’ll a kick out of this low budget – less is more sci-fi.