Every now and again, a film comes along that surprises you with its unelaborate, quirky, and unruffled simplicity, and this year, Safety Not Guaranteed is that film.
A little absurd, but wholly pleasing, Safety Not Guaranteed is a nice reminder that the world is a crazy place and sometimes you just have to brace yourself and go along for the ride.
Local newspaper reporters Darius (played by the amiable Aubrey Plaza), Jeff (Jake M Johnson) and Arnau (Karan Soni) decide to track down the writer of an unusual classified ad. It says: “Wanted: Somebody to go back in time with me. This is not a joke. You’ll get paid after we get back. Must bring your own weapons. I have only done this once before. Safety not guaranteed.”
The trio expect to find a nutcase, but instead find Kenneth (Mark Duplass), an offbeat, genuine guy who believes wholeheartedly in his ability to time travel. The question of whether he can time travel or not becomes secondary as the tale becomes a journey of personal discovery for each of the participants.
A fantastic exercise in character-building, Safety Not Guaranteed excels with its brilliant script, stellar acting, and catchy dialogue. It has already picked up countless awards on the film festival circuit, and while it is hardly the most mind-blowing film you will ever see, it is easily one of the least pretentious and most unexpected.