From the Spierig Brothers comes Predestination an Australian science-fiction, thriller originally based on the Robert A. Heinlein short story titled –All your Zombies-.
Fresh from his roles in Sinister and The Purge, genre staple and indie star Ethan Hawke plays a temporal agent who with the aid of time travel fights to prevent a notorious terrorist that has escaped him from killing thousands of people all over again, as well as keep his organization, Spacecorp going.
Predestination is a compelling, mind-blowing and well-crafted thriller that gradually builds up intrigue before throwing in more unexpected plot twists and turns. Hawke’s self-assured, confident and somewhat secretive agent character heads back to the 1970’s following a horrifying attack at the hands of the infamous ‘fizzle bomber’. Following reconstructive surgery to his face, the agent is adamant to track down the terrorist and put all to rights once and for all.
We discover the agent working in a bar where he comes across a young man named John who begins to relay his life history to the agent slightly diverting off the main objective. John’s story takes up a great portion of the film beginning in childhood and transitioning into adulthood with shocking revelations around every corner.
Eventually everything blends together as the viewer slowly works out the reasons for all the elements presented. John’s physical appearance is similar to a young Leonardo DiCaprio, perhaps a reference to Christopher Nolan’s Inception, the time-bending blockbuster.
Sarah Snook’s performance is the ultimate screen stealer; she’s certainly an upcoming actress to watch out for. It’s difficult to reveal too much about her integral role to the entire film however she portrays a character that is dynamic, empathetic and compassionate albeit reserved and defensive.
Hawke as expected delivers a strong performance as a man on the edge, determined to tie up loose ends, we stay firmly on his side throughout as he puts his faith into the ambiguous John to help him track the bomber. Hawke states that the role of the agent appealed to him due to his appreciation of sci-fi as a genre however claimed to prefer the genre’s insight into the human condition over special effects.
Predestination contains a few violent moments incorporating action-packed visuals however it’s one of the more slower paced Sci-Fi’s that focuses the majority of its time on the storytelling.
Predestination is character-driven and dialogue heavy which works in its favour as it engages the viewer soaking them in, wanting to discover more about the agent’s mission and John’s troubled past.
While toward the film’s end everything begins to fall into place and becomes glaringly obvious, it’s a fun and fascinating ride along the way and from the offset is strikingly unexpected.
Predestination is never overly-complex or confusing in what it does, it ensures that by the end, everything will become clear. Without revealing too much, check out Predestination for yourselves for a thought-provoking, well-acted and intelligent genre film.