Darius is a young intern at a Seattle-based magazine and jumps at the chance to investigate the author of a classified ad seeking someone to travel back in time with. Along with Jeff, the staff writer, and Arnau, a fellow intern, the three go on a road trip to a coastal town. While Jeff just wants to chase after his high school crush and Arnau wants some kind of life experience, Darius spends her time with Kenneth, a man who believes that he has built a time machine. The closer they become and the more they understand about each other, the less clear it becomes if Kenneth is just crazy or if he actually is going to successfully travel back in time.Written by
When Darius gives Kenneth her written phone number, it begins with area code 206, which is the code for Seattle and neighboring cities. The next three digits suggest Redmond, Washington, but, as per filming guidelines, his thumb obscures the last two digits. See more »
When Jeff is giving Arnau the get-lucky pep talk outside the motel room Arnau's collar is down/up/down between shots before Jeff actually turns it up after giving him his sunglasses. See more »
LOGLINE: Mark Duplass (Puffy Chair & Humpday) plays Kenneth, the local small town weirdo who bags groceries and places a classified ad seeking a companion for time travel. Aubrey Plaza (Parks and Recreation & Funny People) plays Darius, an intern sent in on assignment with her co-workers (Jake M. Johnson & Karan Soni) to secretly pose as potential time travel candidates and get the scoop for the entertainment magazine.
Obviously the guy is an insane wack-job or is he? As Darius gets in closer with Kenneth and slowly finds out more and more about him, she isn't so sure anymore. Can this guy actually do what he claims, or is he so far off his rocker that he has lost all sight of reality? Writer Derek Connolly weaves in and out the possibilities of what is true and keeps the audience guessing until the film's final second payoff.
Actors Duplass and Plaza are so great radiating weirdness off of each other. The two form an unusual friendship that rings true in every detail. Jake M. Johnson (New Girl) and Karan Soni add several laughs to the bizarre yet hilarious story. The film had many chances to lose sight of believability, but finds a way to stay on course.
The film's ending left me torn. No matter if you are the kind of person rooting for Kenneth to be vindicated, or believe he is crazy all along the story keeps you hooked until the credits roll. Safety Not Guaranteed was a breakout hit from the Sundance Film Festival, and contains the spirit of what independent films strive to be. It's authentic, creative, unusual, and a breath of fresh air. It's fun to see what independent filmmakers come up with when they aren't restrained by the annoyance of making every viewer happy. If you are up for something different do yourself a favor and see this one.
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