Folks, it would appear that there is a director out there who has captured my interest with his titles lately, and that is Shawn Levy. Up until now, Levy has been a name with a familiar ring to it for me, but not someone whose film library I'd be able to list very easily. For those who might fall under the same category, his directorial credits include 'Free Guy', eight episodes of 'Stranger Things', 'Date Night', and a few other "lesser" titles. Like a fine wine, however, this guy seems to improve with age.
Although I feel like this could have been good for a big-screen experience, it (along with several other Netflix originals lately) finds itself entertaining us perfectly fine in the comfort of our own homes. It's getting very cool to see streaming service originals sort of "upgraded" from what they once were, and this one is no exception. I mean, this thing opens up with an incredible parallel to 'Guardians of the Galaxy', as our lead, Adam Reed (Ryan Reynolds), steels a time jet and escapes his chasers through a wormhole, taking him back from 2050 to 2022.
Here, he meets his 12-year-old self (Walker Scobell), whose father (Mark Ruffalo) has recently been killed in a car accident, and mother (Jennifer Garner) has been dealing with it since. Part of her dealing is Adam getting suspended from school, and being somewhat distant from her. As a result, a good chunk of this movie addresses the idea of going back to give your younger self some life advice - something I think we'd all love to be able to do. But the cool thing is that things work the other way around, too, suggesting that we were never once "just dumb kids".
Anyway, back to the plot, older Adam has accidentally crash-landed in 2022 due to a struggle during his escape. His aim, however, was to get to 2018, where he has learned that his wife, Laura (Zoe Saldaña) may have travelled back to and gotten herself trapped. All the while, he's being chased by the leader of a 2050's dystopian future, Maya Sorian (Catherine Keener) and her badass lieutenant, Christos (Alex Mallari Jr.). Maya, basically being the self-proclaimed mother of time travel (unofficially). There's a twist here and a turn there, and soon it becomes less about the rescue mission and more about doing what's right.
Now, can we just take a second to talk about Walker Scobell? This his his screen debut at 13 years old, and he Ryan Reynolds' the hell out of his role here. I swear, they found the perfect kid to play him, and that much is evident the second we're introduced. I've said this in the past (and on my past site) about young, rising stars (including Chloe Grace Moretz after 'Kick-Ass', Saoirse Ronan after 'The Lovely Bones') but this is a kid to keep an eye on. Let's face it, being a good match for a young Ryan Reynolds would probably be a good start if you're just starting your acting career.
As for the rest of the film, it does appear that I'm a bit of an odd man out when it comes to how much I enjoyed this. But what can I say? It just struck a chord with me. And I'm not necessarily bias towards Ryan Reynolds, as you might see in my review for 'The Voices'. I also wasn't too fond of 2005's 'Amityville Horror'. As a person, he seems pretty awesome though, and I'd like to have a beer or two with the guy. I don't know if it's the idea of talking to your younger self, the wonderful casting or the fact that I experienced a good range of emotions with it, but I loved it!