The Future

July Interpreter of Maladies


29 July 2011| No Comments on The Future     by Sean Chavel


Recommended with reservations so be warned that it is going to have a very limited appeal, and hard to find too since this indie will find only niche markets. This is not a typical or flattering endorsement but an honest admission: The Future is a lonely-person’s movie, it’s not exactly upbeat. I would like to think hopefully that it is also for someone who used to be lonely and dug their way out of a funk in a way that these characters have trouble in doing so. It does happen to be a rare movie of decent-hearted characters stuck in the bottom rung of Los Angeles with little social outreach, stringing along on occupational idleness. Miranda July and Hamish Linklater are a couple living together in a shabby apartment. They get along on their dependence for the familiar. Yet something is achingly dissatisfying about their stuck in the rut lives.

Two kinds of people should go to this movie. One, the realists who clamor over the courage of independent film. Two, the ones like me that remember fondly of Miranda July’s quirk-quenching first film “Me and You and Everyone We Know” (2005), which has always stuck with me.

But in all honesty the movie begins in the doldrums for too long. July doesn’t exactly have a Paul Thomas Anderson (“Magnolia”) gift for mood and rhythm. But the hermetic smallness recedes, the ideas get bigger, and the heartache finds a resonance. If you can understand the pain of these characters because of something lived in your past, then as a viewer you might be able to unravel your own past. That is, if you relate. In this story, July and Linklater make friends with people in their own separate channels that change their outlook on themselves. That’s what new jobs do, they introduce you to new people.

I want to tread carefully here, but there’s no doubt that somebody that would read my viewpoint would be @#!*% off, but so be it. There are two different responses to the end of the film. The lonely person’s view that the world is s*** and that people lie to each other with unforgivable aftermaths, that relationships never last and that all relationships inevitably reach a drudge, and that the people in your world cannot ever be trusted not unless you got a dog leash on that person. Or there is my view, a singular view perhaps, that you never know if you can rebound in a relationship unless you at least attempt to talk through the deception and lies and see if a cure can happen. Because you never know, and if it can’t be repaired then you at least tried – always talk it through no matter how bad it hurts. Now don’t you agree that my view is the better one? @#!*% , I hope you think so.

There is a caged cat in this film that speaks in voiceover. The cat is at the pound waiting to be adopted, waiting to be loved. The cat wants a human companion very, very badly. The cat explains the ordeal of loneliness and the longing for connection. The cat really wants to talk to somebody, but even though it knows English it also knows it does not have a human voice. It sounds sappy but these people could have really learned something from this cat. Do not live in isolation by keeping the small and big things secret from your partner.

91 Minutes. Rated R.


Film Cousins: “Me and You and Everyone We Know” (2005); “Broken Flowers” (2005); “Rachel Getting Married” (2008); “Blue Valentine” (2010).

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Sean Chavel

About The Author / Sean Chavel

Sean Chavel is a Hollywood based author and movie reviewer. He is the Executive Director of, a new website that has adapted the movie review site genre by introducing moodbased and movie experience based reviews.


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