There are a number of sub genres within the genre of science fiction. We’ve got space operas, dystopian futures, alien invasions, space exploration, and, of course, time loops and parallel universes. Time loops and parallel universes can sometimes be the most difficult to wrap your head around, and of course, the most difficult to write.
Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes shows us that time-loop movies can also be super fun. Junta Yamaguchi’s film, shot on an iPhone in a single take (!!!) is brilliantly quirky. Kato (Kazunari Tosa), our protagonist, owns a coffee shop that he lives right above. His life is seemingly normal and uninteresting, until he’s interrupted by himself — from two minutes in the future.
I won’t get into the details of how the time loop works, but Kato’s future self keeps cluing in his present self to what’s going on. And present Kato becomes future Kato. And so on and so forth!
Kato is, at first, just as confused as the viewer. Rather than being a frustrating sort of confusion, it’s really fun to try to figure out what the hell is going on right along with Kato and his friends. Once Kato’s friends Aya and Komiya are clued in on the action, things start to get even goofier. The group of friends has fun with their past and future selves, doing things like making sure they win a sleeping bag on a scratch ticket (who knew?).
As the group of friends come up with more things to do with their future and past selves, they also meet more and more versions of themselves – they realize that this two minute time loop can actually be infinite. Just when the gimmick starts to get a little old, the stakes ramp up and the friends find themselves in a possibly dangerous situation.
Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes is just a joy to watch. It’s one of the most original films I’ve seen, and a great addition to this years Fantasia Film Festival. While the low-budget, iPhone shot film could have felt like a student project, it’s well executed, well-acted, and totally endearing to fans of the genre.
The Fantasia Film Festival takes place in person and online from August 5 – August 25
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