Coherence (2013)

Day: January 25th, Movie: 26

I had low expectations for this film as I played it on Prime. I had no specific reasons to think it was going to be bad, but I just had never heard anything about it. I’m not even sure how it wound up on the list to watch. However it happened, I am so glad that I saw this, because it is one of the best films that I have watched during this Genre-ary Sci-Fi DailyView.

A group of friends were getting together for a dinner party. With the inclusion of a party guest’s plus one, tensions were beginning to rise among the group. Discussion switched to Miller’s Comet which was going to pass overhead, very close to the earth, that night and how previous comets affected human behavior. When the neighborhood lost power, bizarre things began to happen and the group were tested with their friendship.

I loved the story of this movie. It was intelligent and creative. It kept you guessing as it slowly revealed certain details of what was going on. It balanced the weirdness with plenty of relationship drama and character interactions. The script was clever and well developed, keeping the audience uncertain about what was happening and how everything fit together.

It was great to see Nicholas Brendan (who played Xander on Buffy the Vampire Slayer). Brendan played Mike, an actor whose house was the location of the dinner party. All of these characters had personalities and were more than just taking up space. Time was given to the development of the characters which make us feel more for them than just a group of random people dealing with strange occurrences.

The main character involved was Em (Emily Baldoni), who was dating Kevin (Maury Sterling). Em was bright and inquisitive as things started to happen. She was one of the major people involved in determining what was happening and speculating on what they should do. She does a fantastic job of showing her confusion and uncertainty of the choices that they make. She also takes the biggest swing in the third act, which was truly unexpected.

The fact that this movie was made with such a low budget and limited effects and was still remarkably effective and filled with anxiety showed how successful director James Ward Byrkit was in, this, his directorial debut.

Coherence grabbed my attention immediately and never gave it up. The film ran for a wonderfully paced 88 minutes and every minute of it felt important and vital to either the development of the story or of the characters. The success of the film is that there was a balance between the character study and the sci-fi elements. I found this movie totally engaging and entertaining.

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