Twelve Monkeys

In a future world devastated by disease, a convict is sent back in time to gather information about the man-made virus that wiped out most of the human population on the planet.

I love time travel films, but until I saw Twelve Monkeys, I had started to wonder if maybe I’d seen it done every way there is. There’s the childhood adventure of Back to the Future, the sci-fi confusion-fest of Donnie Darko, and the loopy cycle of time in Looper. But in Twelve Monkeys, there’s a bleak doom and gloom that I both love for being brand new to me, and hate for making me feel dirty inside.

Honestly, I didn’t actually like Twelve Monkeys so much. One of my favourite time travel tropes is how tightly everything ties up – seemingly fraying threads that become little pieces of the finished tapestry when the credits start to role. And while Twelve Monkeys had a little bit of that, too many of the yarns run parallel, crossing over briefly, but never tying themselves together.

I like seeing Brad Pitt in these kinds of roles. I can’t wait to watch Fight Club again. I think Bruce Willis lets him down a little here. This must be when he started phoning it in a little. (I’m chastising Willis for playing the same role in every movie, while praising Pitt for the same thing. You’ll agree this entire reviewing process I’ve spent two years building makes no sense.)

I’m now off track. I don’t really want to talk about Twelve Monkeys right now. I wouldn’t recommend it.

Maybe I should watch it again and give it another chance. As with everything I dislike – movies, books, music – perhaps my first encounter with it just came at the wrong time in my life.

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