Predestination - Online Review

'With essentially just two characters there's never really a mystery here to solve, merely two pieces to slot into a pretty limited puzzle.'

Predestination feels very much a case of The Emperor's New Clothes, as directing team The Spierig Brothers (Michael and Peter) recycle a host of tropes seen elsewhere before presenting a conclusion revelatory both only in how predictable it becomes and how significant the directors seem to think it is.

Perhaps most surprising is just how turgidly paced this film is for the first hour or so. Giving themselves just ninety-seven minutes to play with, the directors dedicate the first hour or so to setup, having Sarah Snook's odd, Bowie-alike stranger walk into a bar and explain her admittedly shocking, but fairly low-key backstory to time travelling enforcer Ethan Hawke.

With essentially just two characters there's never really a mystery here to solve, merely two pieces to slot into a pretty limited puzzle. Large parts should start to fall pretty early and even the final revelations will probably be apparent to genre fans well before the third act begins. Contemporary films such as Looper and, more notably, 2007's Timecrimes have managed similar mysteries with a much more expert hand, blending in some welcome action along the way, which this singularly fails to do.

It's not a total waste and with that runtime it doesn't stick around long enough to become offensive. Snook is good in a challenging role which eventually reveals a very welcome approach which other films would tragically mishandle. Ethan Hawke is predictably fine, but his first collaboration with the directing brothers, Daybreakers, was much more satisfying and had much more to offer discerning genre fans.




Predestination was playing on Blinkbox.


By Sam Turner. Sam is editor of Film Intel, and can usually be found behind a keyboard with a cup of tea. He likes entertaining films and dislikes the other kind. He's on , Twitter and several places even he doesn't yet know about.

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