9/10 “Palm Springs” was released in July of 2020 at the height of the China Virus lockdowns. While many people (myself included) were distracted by “Tiger King”, this phenomenally underrated film quietly dropped on Hulu to terrific reviews but not a ton of viewers. I love reviewing films like this because hopefully I can bring some awareness to it, if you might not have been aware of its existence or its high quality. The film follows Nyles (Andy Samberg) who is stuck in a time loop of a day that keeps repeating itself, much like the plot of 1993’s “Groundhog Day”. Instead of trying with all of his might to get out of it, Nyles has accepted his fate that he will forever be doomed to repeat this day and tries to make the best of it. Matters are complicated when Sarah (Cristin Milioti) ends up stuck in the time loop alongside him but instead of settling, makes it her mission to escape the loop and get back to reality. Their ever changing feelings about each other only adds to the complications that they face. What writer Andy Siara and director Max Barbakow are able to accomplish in a brisk hour and a half is nothing short of extraordinary. “Palm Springs” is loaded with laughter, twists and most importantly…heart. The acting across the board is fantastic but it is our two leads, Samberg and Milioti who have wonderful chemistry and are a joy to watch onscreen. The supporting cast has recognizable and talented faces such as J.K. Simmons, Peter Gallagher, June Squibb and more but Samberg and Milioti are the heart and soul of the film. The film is able to tackle heavy subject matter such as the meaning of life, deep seeded regret, family betrayal, alcoholism, failure to launch and more but all while providing consistent laughter along the way to make this a highly entertaining and well paced film. While recent movies such as the horrible “Happy Death Day” and its equally awful sequel have toyed with the time loop concept to horrendous results, “Palm Springs” takes the depressed man-child Nyles and the regretful, betraying Sarah and contrasts their inner darkness with the bright, sunny hills of Palm Springs, where they can’t hide from themselves. The film excels when it takes big swings with humor but is also just as powerful in the quieter moments between characters; like when Nyles and Sarah take shrooms and go camping or when Nyles meets up with Roy (J.K. Simmons) at his house and the two have a heart to heart. The film does cover some mildly familiar territory that all time loop films inevitably cover (suicide, for example) but the film never takes the lazy route as the intelligent script keeps the audience guessing, laughing and rooting for its two lead protagonists. If you haven’t heard of this film (it wasn’t marketed much), I don’t blame you but now that you have, I strongly encourage you to check out one of the most underrated films of 2020. While you can be forgiven for having been focused on the global pandemic as opposed to the latest Hulu offerings, you owe it to yourself to check out this highly entertaining and worthwhile film viewing experience. If I was stuck in a time loop, I wouldn’t mind making “Palm Springs” a film I revisit once a day.

#NylesFromNowhere / #ThatsMyPloy / #TheWeddingLinger / #WeddingTreason / #WedgeOfTomorrow / #YoureInCaveDanger

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