Note: This is a spoiler-free Instant review
It’s a timeless question: “If you could get into a time machine, where would you go?”
Instant, a new short film that just premiered at San Diego Comic-Con today, tackles that question with a twist.
Short films can be tricky. The filmmaker needs to find a way to capture interest, develop a story, and deliver an ending all within 20-30 minutes. There’s a reason drama TV shows are an hour long.
Instant, created a developed by Rodenberry Entertainment (Star Trek), finds a way to roll all of those features into 19 minutes while developing two separate storylines. It’s an impressive achievement, thanks to succinct writing and an attention-grabbing story. Kudos to Todd Beauchamp (writer) and Alex Albrecht (director) here.
The story itself chronicles a desperate criminal that takes six people hostage. But as time is running out, we discover that one of our patrons is concealing a surprising secret. You may think you have everything figured out, but a twist at the end makes sure you don’t.
The twist is only one reason to watch. Another, and I think the main reason, to see Instant is because if how thought-provoking the film is. Thinking about where you would go in a time machine is obvious. But the desperate criminal generates some attention himself as he explains why he’s so desperate as well.
How about the acting? Instant stars Manu Intiraymi (Star Trek: Voyager), Tony Janning (The Legend of Neil), Tyler Hilton (Extant), Phil Morris (Atlantis: The Lost Empire), Tara Perry (The Fresh Beat Band), and Emily Chang (The Bold Type). That many actors in one 20-minute drama can be tough to manage, but the entire cast seems to have solid chemistry and no one is stepping on anyone else’s toes.
Should I see Instant?
We already live in a world of binge-watching and short attention spans. Instant is fast-paced and keeps your attention throughout, making it a worthy watch. Check it out, spark a thought, and have a conversation with your friends and family.
(Featured Image a screenshot from the film)