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Real Time (2008)

 -  Comedy | Drama  -  2008 (Canada)
6.8
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 2,143 users  
Reviews: 17 user | 15 critic

A gripping thriller about a hit man who gives a down-and-out compulsive gambler just one last hour to live.

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Title: Real Time (2008)

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A gripping thriller about a hit man who gives a down-and-out compulsive gambler just one last hour to live.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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Real Time is a comedic drama about a compulsive gambler given one hour to live by the man hired to kill him.

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Comedy | Drama

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Rated R for pervasive language including sexual references | See all certifications »

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2008 (Canada)  »

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Egy óra haladék  »

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As stated in the title, this film takes place in real time. See more »

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References Showgirls (1995) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Best film I saw at Toronto International Film Festival
11 September 2008 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

Real Time, the second feature of writer/director Randall Cole (19 Months) made its Canadian debut at the Toronto International Film Festival after being the opening night feature at the Slamdance Festival earlier this year.

Opening with a twitchy, expletive-laden, nervous tirade, Ottawa's Jay Baruchel (Knocked Up, Million Dollar Baby) gives the best performance of his young career as Andy Hayes; a doomed gambling addict bemoaning his constant bad luck.

Pulling up alongside Andy in his big black Town Car is Aussie ex-pat Reuben played by Randy Quaid (The Last Detail, Brokeback Mountain) who gives another in a long career filled with excellent performances. Glancing up at Reuben's car, Andy quickly turns on his heel and walks in the opposite direction down the sidewalk to which Reuben calmly puts the car in reverse. Thus begins a hilarious pas-de-deux between man and car on a grey street in Hamilton.

After a stern invitation, Andy reluctantly gets in the car where we discover that we will be spending much of the last hour and a half of his life with him. Quaid's Reuben quietly explains that he has been given the assignment of killing Andy, but will give him until 3pm to get his affairs in order.

Thus our adventure begins, with director Cole cleverly echoing Hal Ashby's 'The Last Detail' in which Quaid takes on the Nicholson role of guiding his young charge in the last moments before an inevitable fate is to befall him.

Both of these character actors are clearly relishing the freedom afforded them by having lead roles in this excellent comedic drama. Quaid's hit man is kind, thoughtful, and contemplative all the while simmering with potential violence, while occasionally flashing a glimpse of the goofy grin we first saw from him in Peter Bogdanovich's 'The Last Picture Show'. Baruchel brilliantly portrays the sadness all too common in people who choose not to engage beyond the perfunctory with the world at large.

Even as events unfold in real time, there is a surreal timelessness evoked as we glide along dilapidated streets, with Reuben as our guide, while a radio station that will bring a smile to the lips of anyone who has a soft spot for 70s Can Con plays innocently along the way.

With cats (both dead and alive), unspeakable acts on potato salad, a somewhat addled shut-in Grandma (national treasure, Jayne Eastwood) and horizontal urination, there are plenty of laughs throughout; despite the serious subject matter in Real Time.

While the film is full of razor-sharp dialogue, writer/director Cole also allows us space, as we are driven through the beautifully shot ugliness of The Hammer's streets, in which Quaid & Baruchel draw us into their messed up worlds, to this point in time.

This thoughtful film invites us to examine how we choose to spend our time, as Andy contemplates a life that has lead him deep into a thick woods with Reuben's gun at his back…

This film will stay with you long after the credits roll. You will be glad you spent these 79 minutes in Real Time.


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