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Movie of the Day: Coherence

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What It Is: A casual dinner party among friends turns into a quantum physics nightmare when a comet’s trajectory passes too close to Earth. Unstuck from the fabric of spacetime, the guests wander through alternate versions of their lives as they try to find their way back to their original selves. Coherence is an intimate character drama that’s more focused on the philosophical questions raised by modern physics than the power of computer generated graphics.

Why It’s Unique: Science fiction generally implies massive budgets, dazzling visual effects, and wooden dialogue peppered with meaningless jargon. James Ward Byrkit’s debut feature steers the genre in a different direction, relying on improvised performances and thought provoking dilemmas with a budget that cost less than the average studio executive’s car. There aren’t a whole bunch of movies out there that balance carefully researched issues in contemporary physics with meaningful character relationships.

Who Made It: James Ward Byrkit literally filmed the entire project in five days at his own home. Prior to this film, he had worked as a storyboard artist for the director Gore Verbinski on projects like the Pirates of the Caribbean Series and Rango. Two of his short films produced before this film, Fractalus and Yes, and…, suggest his unique ability to combine trippy sci-fi premises with an off-the cuff improvisational approach. Surprisingly, Byrkit’s most notable credit since this film has been as the storyboard artist for Edgar Wright’s Baby Driver. Yet Byrkit is exactly the type of filmmaker that HBO or Netflix would give a major original film or even a series order to in their bid to dominate the content wars.

What People Who Liked It Said In 2013:

What Someone Who Didn’t Like It Said in 2013:

And When You’re Still Wondering WTF Happened:

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