Synchronic (2019)

Synchronic (2019)
  • 4836
  • R
  • Genre: Sci-Fi
  • Release year: 2019 ()
  • Running time: \N min
  • Original Title: Synchronic
  • Voted: 4836

Two New Orleans paramedics' lives are ripped apart after they encounter a series of horrific deaths linked to a designer drug with bizarre, otherworldly effects.

1Jamie Dornan\N
2Anthony Mackie\N
  • A good story that is superbly made by 9

    If you are a fan of Benson and Moorhead's previous work, you will most likely enjoy this feature too as they maintain their same storytelling style that smoothly combines fantasy, horror and comedy. And with a larger budget this time, they're able express their mind-bending stories to a greater level.

    Specifically, the score and cinematography are great throughout the film and exceptional at some points. Also, both Anthony Mackie and Jamie Dornan deliver fantastic performances of two best friends who are struggling with their own personal obstacles.

    The story itself is unique in a general sense. But within the realms of the sub-genre that it plays into, it can seem somewhat typical if you follow those types of films. However, the approach taken to portray this story is unique. For me, this separated it from other films of similar narratives and it kept me engaged with the story and the characters.

  • 7.5 for this "Buddy-Thriller-Scifi-Horror-Dramady" Movie! by 8

    There are certain topics, that a lot of film makers avoid, because either its physically to complicated to set up rules and explain them, or they fear the possible backlash. This is why it's even more refreshing to see this approach back in cinema again.

    While the movie doesn't reinvent the wheel, it is an absolute joy to watch and you are not being held back from enjoying the plot by wondering about the specific mechanics about "how does this actually work?" (Without going into spoilers to much, just see it for yourself!)

    Jamie Dornan and Anthony Mackie have an authentic and gripping buddy relationship and both of them should be happy to have signed up for this script. I even struggle to put this movie into a genre, because there is no "Buddy-Thriller-Scifi-Horror-Dramady" category. This movie is weird in the most positive sense of the word and should be enjoyed without reading any spoilers ahead, hence this style of review.

    The budget for this movie wasn't massive, but due to a fantastic piece of cinematography work, it looks much more expensive and just beautifully well done!Yes, money is important in this industry, but here we have a stunning example what can be done with dedication and creativity!

  • Didn't enjoy it at all by 3

    This was a lame attempt at a trippy dark thriller that had little direction or substance until late in the movie. Plot centers around two paramedics who keep finding overdose victims taking the same DMT-derivative pill, leading one of them to eventually "test" them on himself, which magically transport him into different pasts based on which square inch of his room he is standing on. Yes- this is a movie about pills that physically transport people into the past. Gimmicky? Sure. But in theory this could have been made into a heady, smart sci-fi movie if the script/world building were good enough.

    Too bad the script was awful; the first half of the plot is a poorly directed melodrama stuffed full of boring and cliche dialogue. The scenes feel empty, it's hard to care about or pay attention for any of it. The main paramedic weaves in and out of poorly acted paramedic rescues in which the directors don't even try have him do proper protocol (they make a bunch of dumb, obvious errors in judgement no real EMT would do) to his poorly directed personal life in which he has boring conversations with depressed drug addicts, drinks beer to pass the time, and fights with his best friend and wife who weirdly appear in and out of the movie like afterthoughts.

    It attempts establish dramatic and deep scenes but they come across like cardboard.

    There's even randomly inserted dumb 2020-woke dialogue that had nothing to do with the scenes or what these characters would say to each other in real life ("Dude you can't drive the ambulance down that district, a black guy driving around there? Would be more dangerous than half our calls!")

    The second half of the plot is the paramedic "testing" the drug by doing it a bunch of times and getting thrown in catoonish-time periods where rednecks and ghosts and wild animals instantly attack him. Then the only decent part happens- he goes on a somewhat ingesting journey to find and and rescue a friend who got stuck in a past timeline.

    In general if I had to praise it for something, the directors seemed to have some cool moments fleshed out in their head (the space sequences, the great editing transitions) but these were not enough to make up for a empty story and repetitive formulaic bleak characters with dialogue that sounds like it's fresh off the Amazon TV content factory for another random genre show.

  • Synchronic: Acting Loses Strength by 4

    This feature was not a strong of earlier films: Spring and Endless. Although the story was there but the delivery was not. The result was a slow turning of events, it caused viewers not to show empathy to the acting.

    It did have some interesting visual sequences during the drug-induced scenes. Mackie and others tried very hard to put the dramatic feel but at the end loses its strength.

    The usage of New Orleans landscape does have striking effects. Maybe if the directors had driven the story into a horrifying story, it may have projected more from the acting.

  • Poorly made film with dumb take on trite topic by 1

    The only reason this movie could possibly be getting decent reviews is because so few films are being handed to theaters. In this case, movie execs clearly found this at the bottom of their trashcan and decided to pander to starving theaters by highlighting how Falcon from the Avengers was in it.

    The tripe starts with a purposefully out of focus closeup of nothing exciting. If only they had never bothered to focus the thing it would have improved the overall quality. We're then treated to wandering around with some contemptible people until the camera eventually gets to the person who got the short end of the stick and thus was forced to find a way to act as the protagonist.

    Heck, the film at one points make fun of how cliche he is in one of the more inspired lines in the film. There's other laughable moments, but only because they're so bad.

    The premise itself is dumber than the writing. A pill is able to transport certain people into the past for seven minutes. In other words, not only are they going to re-hash the trite topic of time travel, but they're not even going to spend time developing any historical relevance or accuracy. Nor do they even try and offer any semblance of sense to how the pill works. Better if they had the characters say arcanic words that zaps to the past than the stupid medical babble they mispronounce. As for character development, so little time is spent developing viewer empathy that the only character viewers should feel for is the dog. Perhaps if they had knocked this pile of pus down to a twenty minute Twilight Zone episode that spent half of its time focusing on the dog, there would be something re-deeming about it. As it is, this should already be leading Razzie nominations.

1Justin Bensondirector
2Aaron Moorheaddirector
3David Lawson Jr.producer