[Film Review] “Palm Springs” Is a Great Modern Dive into Infinite Time Loops

Palm Springs is a recently released Hulu original about infinite time loops, starring Andy Samberg and Cristin Milioti.

Firstly, I must say that after watching the trailer, I thought this movie would be some awful Groundhog Day remake, and I was fortunately incorrect.

The plot is pretty interesting, as we follow Nyles, the boyfriend of one of the maids of honor at a wedding. Nyles seems to have the whole wedding experience figured out, as he is very casual, wearing a floral button-up with a beer in hand. As Nyles seduces Sarah, the sister of the bride, he is attacked by a character named Roy. Nyles escapes and crawls into the time vortex to start the entire day over. Unfortunately, to their dismay, Sarah follows Nyles into the vortex and gets caught in the loop.

I do absolutely love the friendship that we see Samberg and Milioti build as they go through this “groundhog day” experience on a loop forever. As expected, they start to fall in love and discover all of the worst traits in each other’s pasts as they try to escape the loop.

Samberg is absolutely phenomenal in this, as he portrays this man stripped of care and suffering, since his life in this loop seems hopeless to escape. Milioti is great as the family screw-up, who uses this loop to better herself and to encourage Nyles to care.

We also get a really great J.K. Simmons as a cousin of the bride who parties with Nyles one night and finds himself in the loop after a night of cocaine usage. Simmons portrays Roy, a character who occasionally comes to torture Nyles as revenge for preventing him from raising his children and living with his family.

There are quite a few shocking moments that make us wonder why we should even like these characters, but as the loop continues, they better themselves for an uncertain future.

I really enjoyed the slight similarities to Groundhog Day: Nyles knows what everyone says and does exactly, due to a memory of everyone’s past. The small details of every movement that he’s already witnessed are great.

I love how we’re never told how long Nyles has been stuck in the loop. He seems to have been there for so long and is so devoid of hope of leaving the loop. Nyles does state that he has done something thousands of times, so this makes me think he could have been stuck for decades, but who knows?

I did hate that there wasn’t a forward reference to Groundhog Day. Apart from maybe Source Code, there are very few movies who dive into the infinite loop, much less head on.

The movie was really funny and will keep viewers entertained, being a modern portrayal of the time loop theme. I highly recommend giving this movie a try, especially if you’re looking for a laugh.

Overall, I give this movie an 8.8/10.

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