Saturday, October 24, 2020     Volume: 21, Issue: 34
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Santa Maria Sun / Film

This weeks review
13TH (2020)
AVA
BINGABLE: ABANDONED (2016)
BINGEABLE: Barry
BINGEABLE: CASA DE LAS FLORES
BINGEABLE: FLEABAG
BINGEABLE: NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC DOCUMENTARIES
BINGEABLE: OUTLANDER (2014-present)
BINGEABLE: STRANGER THINGS 3
BINGEABLE: THE SINNER (SEASON 2)
BLAST FROM THE PAST: COOL RUNNINGS (1993)
BLAST FROM THE PAST: FISH TANK (2009)
BLAST FROM THE PAST: HOUSE
BLAST FROM THE PAST: OLDBOY
BLAST FROM THE PAST: RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK
BLAST FROM THE PAST: THE MATRIX
BLAST FROM THE PAST: THE PRESTIGE (2006)
BLAST FROM THE PAST: WILD AT HEART (1990)
BLOW THE MAN DOWN
CLASS ACTION PARK
COASTAL ELITES
DA 5 BLOODS
FIRST COW
GREYHOUND
GUILTY PLEASURES: CHEER (2020)
HAVE A GOOD TRIP: ADVENTURES IN PSYCHEDELICS
HEARST CASTLE: BUILDING THE DREAM
I’M THINKING OF ENDING THINGS
JUST MERCY
LYING AND STEALING
MESSAGE FROM THE KING
MY OCTOPUS TEACHER
NATURETRACK FILM FESTIVAL
ONLY
PALM SPRINGS
PROJECT POWER
PURPLE MOUNTAINS
SHUT UP LITTLE MAN! AN AUDIO MISADVENTURE (2011)
TENET
THE BIGGEST LITTLE FARM
THE KING OF STATEN ISLAND
THE NIGHT EATS THE WORLD
THE OLD GUARD
THE VAST OF NIGHT
TREAD
TV REVIEW: BOSCH
TV REVIEW: CATCH-22
TV REVIEW: COBRA KAI
TV REVIEW: DEFENDING JACOB
TV REVIEW: FEAR CITY
TV REVIEW: GENERATION KILL (2008)
TV REVIEW: HANNIBAL (2013-2015)
TV REVIEW: HELL ON WHEELS (2011-2016)
TV REVIEW: HOMECOMING
TV REVIEW: I KNOW THIS MUCH IS TRUE
TV REVIEW: I MAY DESTROY YOU
TV REVIEW: I’LL BE GONE IN THE DARK
TV REVIEW: LENOX HILL
TV REVIEW: LITTLE AMERICA
TV REVIEW: LOVE ON THE SPECTRUM
TV REVIEW: LOVECRAFT COUNTRY
TV REVIEW: MRS. AMERICA
TV REVIEW: NORMAL PEOPLE
TV REVIEW: PANDEMIC: HOW TO PREVENT AN OUTBREAK (2020)
TV REVIEW: PERRY MASON
TV REVIEW: RAMY
TV REVIEW: RUN
TV REVIEW: SOCIAL DISTANCE
TV REVIEW: SPACE FORCE
TV REVIEW: TABOO
TV REVIEW: THE END OF THE F***ING WORLD
TV REVIEW: THE LAST KINGDOM
TV REVIEW: THE MIDNIGHT GOSPEL
TV REVIEW: THE MORNING SHOW
TV REVIEW: THE MOST DANGEROUS ANIMAL OF ALL
TV REVIEW: THE PLOT AGAINST AMERICA
TV REVIEW: THE THIRD DAY
TV REVIEW: THE VOW
TV REVIEW: UNDONE
TV REVIEW: WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS
TV REVIEW: ZEROZEROZERO
UNDERRATED: BATMAN BEGINS
UNDERRATED: THE BATTERED BASTARDS OF BASEBALL
[UN]WELL

Palm Springs puts a twist on Groundhog Day

PALM SPRINGS

PHOTO BY , COURTESY OF LIMELIGHT

PALM SPRINGS


Where is it playing?: Hulu

What's it rated?: R

What's it worth?: $Full price (Anna Starkey)

What's it worth?: $Matinee (Glen Starkey)

User Rating: 0.00 (0 Votes)

Max Barbakow (Mommy, I’m a Bastard) directs Andy Siara’s debut feature-length screenplay about wedding guest Nyles (Andy Samberg) and reluctant maid of honor Sarah (Christin Milioti), whose chance encounter traps her in Nyles’ Groundhog Day-like time loop. (90 min.)

Glen: Well-explored in director Harold Ramis’ 1993 comedy classic Groundhog Day, this new time-loop film puts Samberg in the Bill Murray role of a misfit forced to live the same day over and over again. The difference is Nyles’ time loop can, and does, trap others inside. It starts when Nyles gets up and stands in for Sarah, saving her from the embarrassment of giving a maid-of-honor speech about her sister, Tala (Camila Mendes) and new brother-in-law, Abe (Tyler Hoechlin). Nyles says all the right things and saves the day for Sarah, and over the course of the night Nyles woos Sarah into falling for him. Things go sideways, however, when bow-toting stalker Roy (J.K. Simmons) shows up and starts firing arrows into Nyles. As he makes his escape, Sarah follows Nyles into a cave despite his protestations, and the next morning she awakens to her sister’s wedding day … again. What follows is Sarah’s desperate attempt to break the loop, something Nyles has obviously given up on after years of attempts. Nyles spends each repeated day drinking and perfecting his nihilist swagger. Literally nothing matters. If he’s killed, he simply wakes up to the same day. Despite this being a retread of a much better film, it’s still very entertaining as we see Sarah go through the same emotional roller coaster Nyles has mastered, and we watch Nyles enjoy a carefree lifestyle devoid of consequence.

Anna: At first we wake up with Nyles and his bridesmaid girlfriend, Misty, and there just seems to be something off with him—but not in a creepy way, just a wildly quirky, fun-loving enigma vibe. After saving Sarah from an unplanned speech, he struts around the dance floor saving grandpa from passing out on the floor with a well-timed chair move and peacocks his way around with cocktail always in hand. Samberg is simply hilarious, giving off a blend of cool-guy dork that doesn’t come off as grating. Milioti shows some real comedic talent here too—her deadpan expression and scathing retorts keep up with Samberg’s quirky character. From utterly unbelievable to panic to, “Eh, let’s just have fun with this!” the two make the most of their same-day adventure. Soon enough, feelings start stepping in the way of their friendship though, and when Sarah finds out that Nyles has been less than totally truthful, she finds a way to escape him every day. I laughed a lot during this flick, and while the idea may be recycled, I enjoyed the ride these two take us on.

Glen: Like Groundhog Day, both Nyles and Sarah have some maturing and growing to do, but their big difference is Sarah is willing to change while Nyles seems resigned to ride out eternity getting drunk and having fun with his power over his environment. Just as Murray’s self-involved weatherman Phil became an expert at navigating his repeated day, Nyles has his day wired. He honestly makes the best of it. Every morning he wakes up at a destination wedding where the free booze is flowing, where he starts his day with cocktails in the pool, and where the most effort required is avoiding his vapid girlfriend, Misty (Meredith Hagner), staying out of the hair of the bride’s parents, Howard (Peter Gallagher) and Pia (Jacqueline Obradors), and avoiding archenemy, Roy, who we learn in backstory also got sucked into Nyles’ time loop. While not as poignant as Groundhog Day, there are plenty of laugh-out-loud moments, and until the theaters reopen, this is as good as we’re likely to get.

Anna: It’s a storyline that can easily get repetitive, but here it stays pretty fun. Nyles is resigned to staying in the loop, but Sarah refuses to just accept her fate stuck in the same day. Once the two part company, she delves into every possible way to get out of the same day—even if it means facing the totally unknown on the other side. Roy is a delightful addition to the cast of characters, and while he is first spiteful over his fate, he soon learns that the life he has really isn’t so bad. Instead of going after Nyles, he can spend his eternity with his wife and children. Maybe it’s bittersweet that he won’t get to walk his daughter down the aisle or see his kids graduate from school, but if he gets to spend his time with them in eternal bliss, perhaps letting go of his anger is a bigger and better choice. It’s sweet and funny, and when we’re all feeling like we’re living in a bit of a Groundhog Day situation through quarantine, it’s a solid film to spend your time with. 

New Times Senior Staff Writer Glen Starkey and freelancer Anna Starkey write Sun Screen. Glen compiles streaming listings. Comment at gstarkey@newtimesslo.com.









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