2013, Movies

Coherence (2013, James Ward Byrkit)

This is one of those super talky, high concept science fiction films which feels like it was written for the stage. (Many of these have been written for the stage, but this one apparently was not.) There are a lot of these films by this point and it’s sort of become its own sub genre. I’m not sure that’s a good thing necessarily as it’s a genre that’s heavy on ideas and a little too weak on much of what most of us love about science fiction (imagining a different future, etc.).


The problem for me with this particular film is that it’s a little too much like a stage play drama – or a film like The Anniversary Party – and not enough science fiction. I don’t know these characters and don’t quite have enough time to get to know them before they start to piss me off. And I really dislike the cliche party drama backstory stuff which insists that these friends have deep dark secrets that will bubble up with alcohol and drugs, and ruin their night (and maybe their lives). Did we really need that aspect to what is a fascinating concept for a film?

I like the concept otherwise, though I find their ability to learn what the concept is to be too easy.

But this one would be a lot better without the Anniversary Party-style infighting.


By the way, the credits contain SPOILERS:

  • Directed by James Ward Byrkit
  • Written by James Ward Byrkit, Story by James Ward Byrkit, Alex Manugian
  • Starring:
    • Emily Baldoni as Emily
    • Maury Sterling as Kevin
    • Nicholas Brendon as Mike
    • Lorene Scafaria as Lee
    • Hugo Armstrong as Hugh
    • Elizabeth Gracen as Beth
    • Alex Manugian as Amir
    • Lauren Maher as Laurie
    • Aqueela Zoll played one copy of Emily when there were two of them in one scene
    • Kelly Donovan, the real-life identical twin brother of Nicholas Brendon, played one copy of Mike when there were two of them in one scene
  • Music by Kristin Øhrn Dyrud
  • Cinematography by Nic Sadler
  • Edited by Lance Pereira
  • Production companies: Bellanova Films, Ugly Duckling Films
  • Distributed by Oscilloscope Laboratories, Metrodome Distribution
  • Release date: September 19, 2013
  • Running time: 88 minutes
  • Country: United States
  • Language: English
  • Budget: $50,000
  • Box office: $102,617

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