Have you ever heard that saying, “Your eyes are bigger than your plate”? That’s pretty much how I sum up Counter Clockwise, a movie that try to be bigger than it was, but ultimately had nothing new to say. It’s not to say this is bad, not at all, it just tried to do more than it could.
Counter Clockwise tells the story of Ethan and Ceil, two “scientists” who are working on a teleportation device, but inadvertently create a time travel machine. Yes, this has been done before, multiple times in fact, but when there is a new way to tell that story, it works. You do this with creative characters, fun locations, new visuals or whatever can be shown for the first time or building on what has been done already.
This movie didn’t really do any of that. It just told the same story of a man using the time machine, learning something or changing something, and having to fix what he broke. I couldn’t figure out if this movie was purposely low budget, or it really didn’t have the budget and tried to do too much. I guess that is left up to the viewer, and for me, it was the latter.
Watching this movie felt like something I made in high school. A style of guerilla filmmaking where you ran to a location, filmed something real fast and moved away. I can actually really admire that since it’s how I made movies in high school (they don’t exist anymore so don’t ask). The locations were very minimalistic, and I still can’t figure out why black garbage bags line the walls in this laboratory. I use the word laboratory loosely; it looks more like the shop from Mythbusters.
The acting was fairly wooden, but with a few moments of genuine emotion. There is no music in the movie, at all. Music adds to tension, and when your second act is basically a giant chase, you need that tension; otherwise it’s just some guy running around. Speaking of that, at one point, all dialogue just ceases. No talks, they just run and chase one another. I got bored and felt uncomfortable with a lack of sound, so I played a song from my iPod during the scene. In fact I played “Reinventing Your Exit” by Underoath, which if you have seen the music video, is literally a guy chasing another guy out in the world. Go check out that music video and you will get it.
Eventually, Ethan starts screwing things up more, and there are multiple copies of himself running around, and he’s chasing himself, while the bad guys chase him, it was weird. The movie concludes with a not so surprising twist ending, but I will say, they at least end it on a somewhat darker note, which I do respect.
All in all, it’s not a bad movie, but it’s not good either. I admire this for the attempt it was, but it tried to be way too much without having anything new back it up. Counter Clockwise is not a movie for someone looking for something more professional, but if you want to see a first time filmmaker attempt to do something creative, check this out.
There’s a cute dog too, so there’s that.