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Buying Time

UK 2024
produced by
Andy Blithe, Kris Smith for aturn films, Television Bandits
directed by Kris Smith
starring Andy Blithe, Ryan Enever, Mark Wells, Estelle Long, Jules Maxine, Adi Thompson, James Crawley, Paula Boyle, Duane C Tucker, Nick Elliott, Joseph Betts, Kris Smith, Tom Moore, Brooke Lay, Jim Turner, Jason Kercher, Mark Nash, John Powell, Maz Usman, Leonardo Martin, Paul Bradford, Kristina Lafser, Sam Heydon, Simon Michael Morgan, Moira Hickson, Arianna Gasperini
written by Andy Blithe, music by Motion Array

review by
Mike Haberfelner

Not too far into the future: The world's plagued by various diseases, but the Lifeline Corporation run by Victor Harrington (Mark Wells) promises relief with the Delta Chip, that once implanted is to prolong one's life by years. Prime Minister Jane White (Jules Maxine) is so impressed by this that she promises the chip to everyone who chooses to have it implanted. But then the Lifeline Corporation makes uipgrades to the chip that are only available to those who can afford it, that is the elite, and soon after, people only chipped with the standard version start to die. People like the wife and daughter of Daniel Avery (Andy Blithe), which after a flirt with alcoholism leads him to do some research on the Lifeline Corporation on his own, only helped by his friend Shaun (Ryan Enever). However, his leads usually end up dead or prove to be dead ends - until he meets an old friend from school, Tess (Estelle Long), who's in a position very similar to his, having lost her chipped loved ones, who drops a lead that leads him to ultimately conclude that the first version of the chip must have been implanted to siphon off life energy from the lower classes to feed the elite. For his findings he receives a sound beating from the Lifetime Corporation's henchmen, but this also gets him in touch with a resistance group Tess is a member of, which isn't only long aware of what Daniel has only just found out, they also plan to take down Lifeline in one single strike - problem is, the group counts only four members (Long, James Crawley, Duane C. Tucker, Nick Elliott), and they've chosen Daniel to get into the line of fire ...

 

Now this little cyberpunk thriller was obviously made on a budget, so don't expect to be smothered by overwhelming imagery and the like - which is of course also a good thing, since being somewhat restricted in funds, both script and direction put clever storytelling first, choose fleshed out characterizations over bland spectacle, and dare to go philosophical from time to time. That though is not to say the film's a bore, as the contrary is the case: Buying Time is well-paced, features many interesting twists and turns while remaining engaging throughout, and the action setpieces are all competently handled. And a very solid cast on top of that helps make this pretty cool genre entertainment.

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Thanks for watching !!!

 

 

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special appearances by
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written by
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a collection of short stories and mini-plays
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