Lowdown: An ad seeking time travel partners sends a group of would be reporters down a quest.
The acquisition of every good thing in life requires some risk taking. Usually, the better the reward the higher the risk. While we may not openly acknowledge it, the best rewards we can collect during our lives come in the form of relationships and friendships; thus they may require us to take significant risks. However, these risks are certainly worth taking – just ask Safety Not Guaranteed, a movie that is all about not being afraid to take risks in order to award oneself with the adventure of being in a relationship. The beauty of this film comes not necessarily through the message it is trying to convey, as nice as it is, but rather through its eccentric Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind influenced way of conveying the message.
Our chief heroine is Darius (Aubrey Plaza), a young but not so beautiful, not so successful and not so popular woman. That is, a normal person, unlike what usually passes for normal in the movies. Oh, and she even lost her mother at a young age. Currently, she’s interning at a magazine where she is often given shit jobs (literally); but when the task of investigating who is behind an ad asking for companionship in time travel adventures, safety not guaranteed, she is allowed to escort the established reporter Jeff (Jake Johnson, whom you may have seen in The New Girl) and another intern to the task.
The trio journeys afar for their investigative journalism duties. Jeff totally messes up his first encounter with ad publisher Kenneth (Mark Duplass), forcing Darius to take his place. At first she naturally expects to meet a weirdo, but then again could Kenneth be really up to something with his claims of time travel? And does it matter when time spent with him is good time? Jeff, on the other hand, turns out to have only been interested in the assignment because his first love lives in the same area. He sets out to meet her, but finds her older and fatter than he remembers. So, is that it? And that second intern on assignment, well, he's a virgin.
Thus all three investigative journalists are on to a relationship related assignment of their own. And everyone will be better for it, including us viewers. Better because in an era where [almost] every film is a replica of a film we have watched before, Safety Not Guaranteed is a breath of fresh air.
Overall: Not the world's best film, but an original film nevertheless. 3.5 out of 5 stars for this short and sweet effort.