James vs. His Future Self

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A time-travel obsessed scientist is visited by an older version of himself in . James () is a scientist who spends all day trying to figure out time travel, hoping to impress his boss Dr. Edna Rowley (Frances Conroy). Ignoring everyone in his life except his sister Meredith () and best friend Courtney (), James is approached by Jimmy (Daniel Stern), who claims to be himself from the future. Jimmy warns James that his hunt for time travel ends up ruining his life and that he should change the trajectory before it is too late.

James vs. His Future Self is a sci-fi-themed comedy from writer/director Jeremy LaLonde (Sex After Kids, How to Plan an Orgy in a Small Town) and co-writer and star Jonas Chernick. In the film, Chernick's character of James is visited by his 60-year-old self, played wonderfully by character actor Daniel Stern, who warns James that pursuing time travel would lead to a life of loneliness and misery. Instead, Jimmy urges James to pay attention to the needs of his sister Meredith and also to not ignore his feelings for Courtney.

A still from James vs. His Future Self
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James vs. His Future Self is a film that greatly benefits from the stunt-casting of Daniel Stern as the crotchety future self of Jonas Chernick's James. Best known as Marv from the Home Alone films, Stern gives the right mix of concern and psychopathic behaviour, in his efforts to save James' life. Admittedly, James himself is a relatively self-centred character for most of the film, who ignores the good things he has in the present, particularly in regards to his relationship with Courtney. Another bit of notable casting in the film is Francis Conroy (Six Feet UnderAmerican Horror Story) as Dr. Edna Rowley, who doesn't have too much screentime in the film but is still memorable in her small role.

Ultimately, it can be said that the message of James vs. His Future Self that you have to learn how to appreciate the things you have in the present, instead of focusing on stuff that happened in the past or your goals for the future. Even though the titular character is a bit on the stubborn side, who ignores the advice by his crotchety older self, by the end, James vs. His Future Self turns out to be a quite heartfelt journey of self-discovery, with just the right touch of dark comedy.

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Sean Patrick Kelly
Sean Patrick Kelly
Sean Patrick Kelly is a freelance film critic and blogger based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.