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In Time (2011)
Almost didn't watch this because of the cast...
I thought it was going to be another singer-turned-actor star vehicle, with girls in the audience drooling over Justin and the pretty-but-bland Amanda Seyfried included to persuade the boyfriends to accompany them to the cinema.
I humbly admit that I was completely wrong on every score.
Justin Timberlake was awesome. Whereas most singers-turned-actors bring their star persona to the screen (Beyonce will always be Beyonce, no matter what role she's cast in), he looked like he was an actor, period, up there with any of the contemporary Hollywood A-listers. I could easily see him taking roles from Jake Gyllenhaal, Tobey Maguire or Ryan Gosling, maybe even Leonardo Di Caprio. There's a surprising grittiness about him, along with a real sensitivity to the needs of the role - he inhabits the character in a way that honestly blew me away.
Amanda Seyfried's previous work in Mean Girls, Mamma Mia and Dear John didn't exactly endear me to her either, but far from being just pointless eye-candy, she totally held her own in the role.
As regards the movie, it's an extremely interesting premise, well-considered and well-executed. While it's ostensibly a sci-fi, it plays more like an alternative present with realistic social themes - think V for Vendetta, Gattaca or Equilibrium instead of I, Robot, Total Recall or Minority Report. But it is equally an action movie, with car chases, shoot-outs and plenty of bad guys chasing the good. The movie also has some surprisingly tender scenes - it definitely has heart - and a little bit of romance thrown in along the way.
In short, don't ever judge a book by its cover. In Time surprised me by being actually very good and, unlike many other action/sci-fi movies, it sticks in your mind long after you've finished watching it.