Review – Repeaters (2010)

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Time Loop Review #07

Type of time loop: 24 hours.

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Well, this is interesting. It’s not often that you realize you’ve already seen a movie but completely forgot you ever did. Years ago, I believe Repeaters was available to stream on Netflix, and just like a thousand other random movies, I watched it on a cold, boring day, ultimately forgetting I ever did. This isn’t a very good sign, considering the fact that I actually like time loop movies, but the second I started watching this, I got the deja vu, discovering that yes, indeed, I have seen this movie. At this point, I was more curious than anything else to find out why it became forgettable.

I’m not fully sure what made this movie forgettable. From an outward viewpoint, there is a fresh take on the overdone concept, as the day is being perceived from three different people instead of the typical lonesome man or woman. This allows for more narrative opportunities overall. Maybe that’s why it became forgettable. Maybe they didn’t properly approach their potential. For instance, there is something the people need to do, and yet, nobody really has any character goals, which can easily make any movie weak enough to become forgotten.

Three young drug addicts find themselves stuck in a time loop living the same day several times and decide to have fun with dangerous situations, believing that on the next morning, everything would be over. But it may be too late until they discover the true meaning of the phenomenon: use the days to resolve personal issues, fixing their lives.

PEOPLE – 12/20 (60%)

Acting – 2/4 | Characters – 2/4 | Casting – 2/4 | Importance – 3/4 | Chemistry – 3/4

When we talk about the people category, like every other category, we are looking for things that actually stand out. Even though I remembered this film, I didn’t remember who played in it, nor will I continue remember this time. That’s because it really, truly doesn’t matter. Anyone could play these people, even play them differently, and it just wouldn’t matter, since it focuses more on the concept than who the concept affects. The nice thing about that is that importance comes into play, especially when there are three people stuck in a loop instead of one. Everyone ends up playing an important role in what happens, ultimately. That being said, nobody has any character goals, so the importance can’t get full points. As for chemistry, the movie did a pretty good job, but it wasn’t everything it could’ve been, either.

WRITING – 7/10 (70%)

Dialogue – 1/2 | Balance – 1/2 | Story Depth – 1/2 | Originality – 2/2 | Interesting – 2/2

For the most part, a lot of this movie is forgettable because not much really stands out. That doesn’t mean that nothing at all stands out. One thing that does is the film’s originality. Weirdly enough, we all know the concept of time travel isn’t original and has been done quite a lot, but somehow…the way Repeaters put it together…felt original. Maybe it was the fresh take with three characters, maybe it was adding a physical villain. I don’t know. But it feels original enough to get full points here, and that freshness also kept the movie interesting. Everything else gets half points here as nothing else stands out. Bland dialogue, no character goals, so no clear direction for the balance, and while the bones for a meaningful story is there, it isn’t very focused on.

BTS – 6/10 (60%)

Visuals – 1/2 | Cinematography – 1/2 | Editing – 1/2 | Advertising – 2/2 | Music/Sound – 1/2

As long as the BTS in a film isn’t falsely advertised, you will almost always get 60%…that is, unless they really suck at actually doing some pretty basic things. In the case of Repeaters, everything is as standard as possible here, never really attempting to stand out. Had they had stronger focus in this area, I believe the film would’ve been more memorable in the long run.

NARRATIVE ARC – 9/10 (90%)

Introduction – 2/2 | Inciting Incident – 2/2 | Obstacles – 1/2 | Climax – 2/2 | Resolution – 2/2

We had a pretty solid, albeit not perfect narrative arc. The only issue this film had in this issue was with the obstacles, and it really only had one main obstacle, which was the time loop itself. Obstacles are created when the hero or heroes are stopped from getting to where they are trying to go – if they aren’t trying to get anywhere, there simply cannot be any true obstacle. When you watch, the only real obstacle you can discern is the time loop itself, and maybe, maybe the villain of the story, even though that is just as basic as you can get.

ENTERTAINMENT – 2/10 (20%)

Rewatchability – 1/2 | Fun Experience – 1 | Impulse/Buy – 0/2 | Impulse/Talk – 0/2 | Sucks You In – 0/2

This is one of the lowest scores I’ve had for entertainment in the time loop subgenre. Why? Mostly because of the last subcategory – sucking you in. There isn’t really anything in this movie that is so incredibly important that you can’t blink or look away from. You could easily pause this movie, fall asleep during this movie, or keep it playing while you use the restroom because as much as I would rather not say it, the movie is kind of boring. It’s boring because there’s not much heart to these characters or their stories that make you tune in on that kind of level. Everything up to this point has ultimately explained why the movie became forgettable. It has a decent narrative structure, but without enough sustenance, nothing stays with you.

SPECIALTY – 30/40 (75%)

Time Loop – 10/10 | Thriller – 5/10 | Drama – 5/10 | Halfway Decent – 10/10

Let’s find out the custom category for Repeaters. Obviously, the most important thing to look at is how it works as a time loop film. As I’ve stated before, their use of time loop felt original and was actually, honestly done well. When looking at genre-specific questions, we see drama and thriller. Drama-wise, I do see it, but at most, it tries a little too hard to be dramatic. The same can be said about the thriller aspect. It is clearly a thriller, but it doesn’t consistently feel thrilling due to trying too hard. As for being halfway decent, it is. They ultimately made the movie they wanted to make, which is really the most important thing any filmmaker wants for their craft.

Total Score – 66%

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