Mumblecore crown prince Mark Duplass plays an intense loner who is convinced he can transport people around the space time continuum. An advert placed in the local Seattle rag alerts investigative hack Jeff (Jake Johnson) and enthusiastic intern Darius (Aubrey Plaza) who head upstate to suss out whether he's a crackpot or the unlikely real deal. This utterly charming, off-beam romantic drama, blessed with a paucity of plot, thrives on a heartwarming celebration of oddballs connecting and good guys (and gals) triumphing over corporate adversity.
Mary Lynn Rajskub
It's not often you come across a sci-fable tentatively promising time travel yet resolutely remaining firmly grounded on terra firma that offers such rich rewards.
Mark Duplass is muttering loner Kenneth, an apparent weirdy who places an ad in a local Seattle rag advertising for an adventurous partner to accompany him on a trip back in time.
There's not many takers...except for local hack Jeff (Johnson) who seizes the opportunity for some headlining-grabbing sport with a deluded nutter while hooking up with an old flame from the past.
Heading north along the coast, he takes along oddball intern Darius (Plaza) and wet-behind-the-ears Arnau (Soni) and little solid hope of a real story.
Sure enough, Kenneth proves to be a locally mocked fruitcake, who lives in a run-down shack and quietely amuses his fellow workers in a grocery story with his tales of time travel.
Reluctantly, Darius gets the gig of volunteering for this barking trip back in time...only to find herself charmed by a kindly innocent who venerates Star Wars yet is capable of real romantic connection (that's got to be a first).
This sweetly compelling yarn makes a virtue of its indie trappings yet at its core is a poignantly touching tale of two loners connecting and finding a rawly simple happiness (even if he does play a zither).
Plaza is a real find - a self-effacing star who can play the sort of character Zooey Deschanel could never quite nail - while Duplass excels as the bear-like outsider.
See it...then travel back in time and see it again.