Arley Sorg and Josh Pearce discuss Palm Springs – Locus Online
One November day in Palm Springs, wedding guest Nyles (Andy Samberg) falls through a mysterious portal into a cave then, groundhog day-style, is found to repeat the whole day of the wedding. He’s trapped in a time loop that resets whenever he walks through the portal, falls asleep, or dies.
An unknown number of repetitions later, Maid of Honor Sarah (Cristin Milioti) follows him through the cave portal and finds herself trapped in the same loop. Stuck in an endless amount of time and space, essentially alone together, Sarah and Nyles go through a shit.
Arley: I would recommend it as a casual watch.
Josh: I liked it. I didn’t even know it was going to be sci-fi until I started watching! It was a pleasant surprise.
Arley: I think it’s good to know there’s a speculative element in there. Just so you don’t expect a live Wedding crashers, or The wedding planner. There’s bound to be a mixed audience, and one of my favorite movies is Bridesmaids (which is SO GOOD), but I think a lot of people who love these movies aren’t interested in the groundhog day version.
Josh: But then I started nit-picking reality. Andy Samberg said, “I don’t spend a lot of time thinking about the multiverse,” and I said, “Well, why not ?!” I certainly do. There was also this scene where they saw dinosaurs, which was completely unexplained. At this point, the movie was surreal enough that they could put whatever they wanted into it.
Arley: I think that’s part of the target audience difference: a lot of fans of “wedding comedy” – which is its own huge market – probably don’t think much of the multiverse. By the way, did you understand why there were dinosaurs?
Josh: No. Really ?
Arley: No. Maybe they got caught in their own time loop?
Palm springs is one of those rare time loop movies which tries, most of the time successfully, to provide a rational, scientific explanation for its loop, and also provide a logical, scientific way out of it (although a goat creates a plot hole). As we’ve all seen enough zombie movies to automatically know what to do in the event of an actual apocalypse, time loop movies have reached a saturation level so that the characters they contain can, theoretically, ignore all the silly ideas. and go right to the right things, and the audience will be able to follow.
Therefore, it speaks so much to Nyles’ character that after thousands of cycles, he didn’t improve or educate at all, while Sarah almost immediately did. (Even Bill Murray learned to play the piano.) It’s unclear who the main character is, as Nyles mainly serves to explain everything while Sarah pushes the plot forward. In fact, it is Nyles’ lack of progress, and even her lack of desire to progress, that motivates Sarah to force her own path.
Arley: If we look at screen time, it’s probably mostly Andy Samberg, and Sarah is like a supporting character who strives to be a main character.
Josh: Yeah, she’s going away for a while, but I think Sarah is the main character because she’s got the most growth and numbers. She is drawn into the time loop by Nyles, and Nyles is drawn into the real story by her, so he’s a deuteragonist. He … not do anything – neutragonist. I guess he learns a few dance steps and sleeps with everyone. it makes Something.
Arley: My favorite was when he went through all the people he had slept with and said, “Because, why not? I think if you like Andy Samberg you’ll like this movie because a lot of him is him. Perhaps less than Brooklyn nine-nine, and more at the adult level. I do like him, and I think he’s pretty funny, but he’s such a bland guy in this movie and he has an awesome daughter, which is a nerd movie trope. A bit the same dynamic as Peralta and Santiago.
Josh: That’s a pretty standard wish fulfillment, one would expect in an escape fantasy. It’s not a hyper-real drama, obviously. It’s not Andy Samberg’s usual brand of humor, either – it’s not Never stop never stop or this film by Jose Canseco.
Arley: I don’t like comedies, and there are romantic comedies that I like, and I like Andy Samberg. I had a few laughs. Guys I watched it with, I think they liked it more than I did, but I also think it’s some kind of humor, let’s call it white suburban middle class humor . And he was the kind of guy I watched him with. There is that kind of old-fashionedness.
Josh: It’s not brotherly humor, though. Not exaggerated. And it’s not just “a comedy”: there are dark stuff, speculative elements and romance.
Arley: People are being chased. I liked people to be chased away.
Josh: Well that part has been funny.
Why Palm Springs? As well as being a popular wedding destination, the city is a shortcut for a hedonistic lifestyle, serving in the past as a Rat Pack getaway, hosting countless stag and hen parties, and point zero for Coachella. What better place, then, for Nyles to give in to an excess of dark appetites and desires before quickly descending into despair? (See the boredom of immortality The old guard, in comparison.)
He is not the only one. Roy (JK Simmons), another character stuck in the time loop, demonstrates that even murder and torture is not as out of the question as it would normally be. Nyles, accustomed to doing whatever he wants without regard for the future (the slogan of the poster is “Live as if there is no tomorrow”), does not reflect on the repercussions of his rehearsals until afterwards. that Sarah has followed him, only when there is someone else in the loop to remember all the terrible things he does.
The film doesn’t dwell on it too much, but the moral of the story could very well be, “What would you do if there were no consequences?” “
Josh: I liked the character of JK Simmons. I still love his characters. I didn’t know who Cristin Milioti was because I never finished how I Met Your Mother, but I thought she was great at it.
Arley: She did a good job and her character was pretty complicated. She goes through a wider range of things than Andy Samberg’s character. Samberg is quite a note, with occasional fun expressions as a seasoning.
Josh: The film takes its time to reveal Sarah’s story, although it can be apparent early on if you pay attention to it.
Arley: One of my favorite parts was when Samberg goes to Roy’s place and says’ You haven’t been there for a while ‘, and Roy says,’ I was in the hospital and it made me think to all that I put you. through. ”This is one of the deepest moments in the movie. It’s all about empathy. Cycles of misery. Roy thinks, why am I doing this? I have to accept where I am and enjoy my time with my family.
Josh: One thing that started to bother me the more I think about it is that Nyles is basically a pick up artist. Picking up “artists” supposedly uses pop psychology to try and shorten evolutionary and biological urges, and Nyles does the same with Sarah. He has iterative conversations with her until he finds the exact dialogue that will make her sleep with him. Technically it’s consensual, but it’s also very manipulative and seems like a fragile foundation on which to base your entire relationship with her. Does she love him because he’s a really nice guy? Or because he has practiced saying all the right things a lot?
Arley: You totally agree with that. Palm springs also reminds me 50 first dates, in the sense that it feels like the movie was built around a specific personality (Sandler in one, Samberg in the other), and the relationship is reset over and over again. Russian doll does a lot more for the time loop genre: interesting characters, interesting tales, quality of the story, and it’s full of surprises, in a trope that doesn’t really surprise you that much. The main character is awesome, and Andy Samberg is not.
Josh: Palm springs is not innovative for a sci-fi movie, but it is for a romantic comedy.
Arley: There were those Happy day of the dead movies. I haven’t seen them.
Josh: Neither have I, but I’ve heard people compare it to these, as far as creative suicides.
You might be in it for the romance, to see if Nyles and Sarah reunite at the end. Or you can be there for science fiction, to see if they escape the time loop. Or you might be interested in both, if they break out of the time loop together! Anyway, there’s probably enough will-they-won’t-go in Palm springs to keep you interested in its 90-minute battery life.
Arley: It’s a bit of a silly romantic comedy with a time loop. If you love Andy Samberg, love light romantic comedies, and have browsed your best movies, then go ahead and give it a try. It’s entertaining, but it’s not something you have to rush to see.
Josh: It’s short, and it’s moving forward. I was engaged the whole time because this is one of those movies where you try to figure out what you would do in a similar situation. As It follows.
Directed by: Max barbakow
Written by: Andy Siara
With: Andy Samberg, Cristin Milioti, JK Simmons, Peter Gallagher, Meredith Hagner, Camila Mendes, Tyler hoechlin & Chris Pang
JOSH PEARCE, deputy editor, started working at Location in 2016. He studied Creative Writing at SFSU and sold short stories and poems to various speculative fiction magazines. Born and raised in the Bay Area, he currently lives in the East Bay with his wife and son and spends far too much time on Twitter: @fictionaljosh. Ken Jennings once signed his chest.
ARLEY SORG, associate editor, grew up in England, Hawaii and Colorado. He studied Asian religions at Pitzer College. He lives in Oakland and generally writes in local cafes. Graduated from the Odyssey Writing Workshop in 2014, he is preparing a novel, has launched some short stories in orbit and hopes to launch more.
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