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In Time (2011)



Average Rating: 5.2/10
Reviews Counted: 157
Fresh: 56 | Rotten: 101

In Time's intriguing premise and appealing cast are easily overpowered by the blunt, heavy-handed storytelling.


Average Rating: 5.3/10
Critic Reviews: 43
Fresh: 16 | Rotten: 27

In Time's intriguing premise and appealing cast are easily overpowered by the blunt, heavy-handed storytelling.



liked it
Average Rating: 3.3/5
User Ratings: 66,473

My Rating

Movie Info

When Will Salas is falsely accused of murder, he must figure out a way to bring down a system where time is money - literally - enabling the wealthy to live forever while the poor, like Will, have to beg, borrow, and steal enough minutes to make it through another day. -- (C) 20th Century Fox

Jan 31, 2012


20th Century Fox - Official Site External Icon

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All Critics (157) | Top Critics (43) | Fresh (56) | Rotten (101) | DVD (2)

In Time is so crammed with provocative ideas it begins to feel over-crowded.

June 20, 2013 Full Review Source: The New Republic
The New Republic
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Clever and unsettling.

November 10, 2011 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader | Comments (2)
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Niccol's major problem is timing: action sequences and dialogue scenes lie flat on the screen, while his tendency to play around with pacing means that any tension quickly dissipates. Life's too short.

November 1, 2011 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The film is beautifully shot in chilly blues and grays by cinematographer Roger Deakins, and Los Angeles locales are well chosen for futuristic effect. Most of the time, however, I found myself glancing at the clock on my own wrist.

October 31, 2011 Full Review Source: Christian Science Monitor | Comment (1)
Christian Science Monitor
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Niccol's zippy direction, joined to a sleek, rich production design, keeps the movie spinning like a shiny toy.

October 31, 2011 Full Review Source: New Yorker | Comments (6)
New Yorker
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A movie so consistently flat-footed, with pauses between lines of dialogue so vast, that you begin to wonder if the whole thing might be a psychological experiment of some kind.

October 28, 2011 Full Review Source: Slate | Comments (7)
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Don't let the ads fool you: It has a lot on its mind.

June 22, 2013 Full Review Source: Deadspin

One long, extended chase sequence interspersed with awkward flirting.

March 4, 2013 Full Review Source: Concrete Playground
Concrete Playground

Even with its thoughtful nods to "Bonnie & Clyde" and "Les Miserables," "In time" never delivers that transcendent "Blade Runner" moment, and never rises above cult classic to simple classic.

December 29, 2012 Full Review Source: McClatchy-Tribune News Service
McClatchy-Tribune News Service

There's a lot to like about In Time, but it misses the mark for being an overly memorable experience and ends up being just an adequate sci-fi flick.

September 22, 2012 Full Review Source: We Got This Covered
We Got This Covered

"In Time" gets points for putting forth an interesting concept, but because of Niccol's inability to utilize that concept, we get a film that ends up going nowhere.

September 18, 2012 Full Review Source:

Worry, worry and watch the clock, for 'In Time' wastes what time you've got.

April 12, 2012 Full Review Source: ReelTalk Movie Reviews | Comment (1)
ReelTalk Movie Reviews

Andrew Niccol's dystopia never really feels like anything other than a depthless, stylish sleek surface.

February 27, 2012 Full Review Source: SFX Magazine
SFX Magazine

Starts out great, almost like a pseudo sequel to Niccol's other sci-fi drama Gattaca, but slowly unravels into a mindless chase picture that never really captures any real depth or meaning.

February 12, 2012 Full Review Source: IGN DVD

Nothing remarkable about this futuristic adventure that reminds me a bit of "Logan's Run." Paul Chambers, CNN.

February 9, 2012 Full Review Source: CNNRadio | Comment (1)

Andrew Niccol continues to be the go-to guy for using smartly executed science-fiction/fantasy concepts in the service of expressing ideas rather than bang-up action.

February 2, 2012 Full Review Source:

The movie doesn't ask much of them, acting-wise, as it devolves into a chase film and doesn't spent any time examining all the thorny moral quandaries that it brings up.

January 30, 2012 Full Review Source: | Comment (1)

Prophetically arriving at about the same time as the Occupy Wall Street protests, the film couldn't be more relevant; unfortunately, it's also ham-handed.

January 23, 2012 Full Review Source: Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)

h skhnothetikh akribeia kai oi sygkrathmenes aisthhtikes pinelies me tis opoies employtizei ayto poy exei apofasisei na kanei, de se afhnoyn na peis thn tainia toy Niccol xasimo xronoy akribws, alla oyte kai gia quality time mporeis na thn peraseis

December 26, 2011 Full Review Source: Movies for the Masses | Comment (1)
Movies for the Masses

Timberlake's charisma can't carry this but it's hard to think of anyone who could.

December 7, 2011 Full Review Source: | Comment (1)

Like a 99 Percenter in the making, Will is stunned to hear from Henry that -- oh my god! -- the system of doling out time is rigged.

December 7, 2011 Full Review Source: PopMatters | Comment (1)

Nobody should waste a minute of their life on this baloney.

November 18, 2011 Full Review Source: East Bay Express | Comments (6)
East Bay Express

Niccol's metaphor gets silly fast.

November 17, 2011 Full Review Source: Boston Phoenix
Boston Phoenix

This Bonnie and Clyde couldn't have less on screen chemistry if Clyde was the orangutan from Every Which Way but Loose.

November 13, 2011 Full Review Source: The Ooh Tray
The Ooh Tray

This alternate world's hollowness drains the movie, blanching the noir. Cheesy, corny moments pop up throughout. Grinds its potential down into a clockwork chase movie.

November 11, 2011 Full Review Source: Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)
Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)

Audience Reviews for In Time

"In Time" is a wonderful premise done in by an aimless and weighed down script. The story goes into out-of-the-blue directions that do the premise a major disservice. Perhaps if they had fully focused the story around the "Robin Hood" angle more completely, "In Time" could have worked, but it wastes too much time with subplots involving uninteresting criminals, predictable villains and connect them together with ponderous dialogue.

A wooden Timberlake and a pallid Seyfried are serviceable as leads but just like the rest of the cast the actors can't find their character's consistent core purpose so they just play them as generically as possible. Vincent Kartheiser and Cillian Murphy play versions of other characters they've played before.

Shoulda coulda "In Time" rarely delivers on its promise.
December 24, 2012
The Gandiman
Tony Gandía

Super Reviewer

Interesting enough. Action filled enough. Halfway decent enough storyline. I think, however, that Justin Timberlake isn't actor enough...Not bad, but not memorable, either.
July 31, 2012

Super Reviewer

Take an interesting idea that has a message that fits the Takeover movement like a glove and you should have a film that resonates as well as entertains. In Time does that... to a point, although it comes on a bit heavy handed and the back half resorts to the typical car chase stock in trade of a film that can't really figure out something better to do with its screen time.

There is a certain nice, retro feel on display here, especially with all the customized Lincoln's and Dodge Challengers circa late 60's and early 70's. That and a nice usage of the L.A. canals and seedier backstreets (some of which I swear I've seen in about a million other films), give the film a good feel, as does some of the lighting elements - but then again it's so uneven. There are washed out scenes that perhaps were intentional, but jarring nonetheless when coming from the tight, claustrophobic dimness of the "ghetto".

The story here, just in case you were asleep in class, deals in a future where people stop ageing at 25 (think Logan's Run), and yet someone came up with the bright idea (to stem overpopulation, no doubt) to give everyone a time counter that activates at age 25. From that point on, in order to survive one has to buy time. If you go bankrupt and your time goes down to zero... well, let's just say that at that point Elvis leaves the building.

This is ok as far as it goes - a nice little bit of sci-fi - but the film does a nice turn by going deeper, suggesting that the 1% can control population growth and keep the downtrodden down by manipulating the cost of everything. So one day a bus ride will cost an hour, the next day it'll cost two - all to keep the lower class from gathering too much time (money). It is this aspect of the film that gives it relevance and really, if director/writer Andrew Nichol would have spent more time developing this aspect he would have had a better film. In fact, the first half, where this is explored, kept my attention. It was only later when Nichol went all Hollywood that the film loses its way - and boy does it ever; resorting to inane car chases and a Bonnie and Clyde buddy type film with bits of humor and bon mots that totally change the tenor of the film.

There is the big confrontation scene at the end where any five year old can tell way in advance what will happen, sucking any potential tension out of the situation. Making it worse is that the film then reuses a dramatic device from earlier in the film - the first time was poignant, the second just seemed silly and lazy. This is then followed with a tag that attempts further humor and is simply superfluous - making this feel like a low budget B film; which got me thinking of all the other B cult films from an earlier age - this film would fit right in to the category where a film like "A Boy And His Dog" reside - not great filmmaking, but not without a certain quirky charm - though A Boy & has a more cohesive narrative.

I'm really torn over whether or not this should be considered fresh or rotten - It does have some watchability, and in spite of the change or direction, isn't a total disaster - it rides right on the cusp - a 5.5 if you will. I won't discourage anyone from seeing this, but won't recommend it either.
July 27, 2012
paul sandberg

Super Reviewer

A real surprise. A thrilling, stylish, sexy and daringly original action-thriller. One hell of a wickedly entertaining and exciting movie. One of the most original sci-fi films to hit the screen since The Matrix. Director, Andrew Niccol brings slick direction and vision to this film and has plenty of energy to go around. Justin Timberlake and Amanda Seyfried are sensational. Cillian Murphy is excellent.
June 27, 2012

Super Reviewer

    1. Raymond Leon: You can run.
    2. Will Salas: So can you.
    – Submitted by Emelyn W (3 months ago)
    1. Sylvia Weis: We can't just keep driving around in this car. It's a cop car.
    2. Will Salas: So let's make an arrest.
    – Submitted by Carlo Roy R (16 months ago)
    1. Sylvia Weis: I didn't mean to shoot him, I wanted to scare him.
    2. Will Salas: I think you did both.
    – Submitted by Carlo Roy R (16 months ago)
    1. Sylvia Weis: Is it stealing if it's already stolen?
    – Submitted by Carlo Roy R (16 months ago)
    1. Will Salas: Live forever or die trying.
    – Submitted by Lydia Gonzalez M (22 months ago)
    1. Will Salas: COME ON! HELP YOURSELVES!
    – Submitted by Baurushan J (2 years ago)
View all quotes (19)

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Latest News on In Time

November 30, 2011:
Harlan Ellison Drops His In Time Lawsuit
"According to a stipulation filed in court on Monday, the decision came after the plaintiff had a...
October 28, 2011:
What the Flick!? Takes on In Time, The Rum Diary, and Puss in Boots
This week on What the Flick, I join critics Christy Lemire (AP, Ebert Presents At the Movies) and...
October 28, 2011:
Critics Consensus: Puss in Boots is the Cat's Meow
This week at the movies, we've got a swashbuckling feline (Puss in Boots, with voice work from...

Foreign Titles

  • In Time - Deine Zeit läuft ab (DE)
  • In Time (UK)
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