Based on a short story (All You Zombies) from sci-fi author Robert A. Heinlein, Predestination is a terrific movie about time travel that will kick you square in the balls. Do yourself a favor and do not watch the trailer or read any additional information about this movie. The lesser you know, the better.

In fact, you’ll probably want to seek out Predestination before you read this review. I’ll delicately tip-toe around to avoid revealing vital information. If a super sci-fi story isn’t enough to sell you on seeing this movie, then let me wax poetic about Predestination without really telling you about the story.

Predestination does not waste any time thrusting you into the very crux of the action. But don’t be alarmed when that action comes to a grinding halt. Patience is a virtue that will reward you when watching this movie because the introduction isn’t exactly enthralling. The initial events are important, but I can easily see why some people will want to check out during the first act within a half hour.

Ethan Hawke

Don’t expect an action-packed thriller. Predestination is not that type of movie. At a basic level, the story deals with utilizing time in a way to prevent crime before it takes place. But this is not Minority Report.

And that’s a good thing.

I’ll admit, I hesitated to press play and dreaded the slow start of Predestination. Ethan Hawke has been in a serious string of shitty movies. A bad re-imagining of a Minority Report-type of story made me imagine all sorts of awful things. I’ve never been able to sit through the entire runtime of Daybreakers, but it’s creepy and strangely pretty when stumbling across it while on mushrooms (allegedly).

After watching Predestination, you would never think the Spierig Brothers were the writer-directors of both movies. While much of the writing can be credited to Robert A. Heinlein for the source material, the direction of Predestination is impeccable and even more impressive on a repeated viewing. You need to look closer at the details to make more connections and appreciate the execution.

In addition to great writing and directing, Predestination also benefits from amazing acting. Sarah Snook could not have been any better. Besides this movie, I’ve only seen Sarah Snook before in Jessabelle, which is a rather forgettable horror movie from earlier in 2014. If you can just get past her weird accent, she’s a very promising young actress. Noah Taylor also puts forth a convincing performance in his supporting role.

Sarah Snook

Predestination is Ethan Hawke’s best movie since Training Day. If you dare say Boyhood, I’m going to reach through this computer screen and swat that shit right back into your stupid face—Dikembe Mutumbo-style (finger wag and all). Boyhood was a boring, bland piece of shit story that was only interesting as a movie because the gimmick of filming over such a prolonged period with the same actors aging over time.

While Predestination isn’t as enjoyable as Looper with Joseph Gordon-Levitt, there is more substantial depth in terms of its storytelling. The story and the way it is presented just tears you inside-out. You might not even know quite who you are after experiencing the heart-wrenching nature of this movie.

Undoubtedly, Predestination will leave you with a lot of questions. Sometimes, the question can be more important than the answer. Don’t be one of those people who need everything spoon-fed. There are answers presented in this movie, but certain questions can only be answered by yourself.

“I know where I come from. But where do all you zombies come from?”


5 out of 5 stars

  1. Archon's Den says:

    Have read all of Heinlein’s stuff. Read this story years ago. I seem to have missed this movie. Time to correct that oversight. Here, Netflix….where are you?? 😕

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