The Map of Tiny Perfect Things asks us to consider, if we had all the time in the world, wouldn’t time eventually lose all meaning and value?
Kathryn Newton and Kyle Allen lead this smart teen love story where time does literally stand still for its couple. ‘The Map of Tiny Perfect Things’ is directed by Ian Samuel’s and tells the story of Kyle’s character Matt being stuck in a time loop and having to repeat the same day. The film begins at a point where Matt has become quite comfortable with this new reality and has a better understanding of what’s happening to him while still trying to figure out why it has occurred.
Like most people would, he takes advantage of the having the foresight to know what is about to occur during the day and casually interjects himself into strangers lives at opportune moments to save them from minor accidents and incidents which he knows are coming. Despite this almost Godlike ability to know the future, he soon begins to feel the strains of isolation and loneliness. Living an existence only he is aware of begins to lose its spark
In steps Kathryn Newton’s character Margaret, also stuck in this time anomaly. The pair soon team up and together discover the many amazing moments hidden in a day that would have otherwise been missed. Their adventures together range from benevolent acts of kindness to trespass and criminal damage. All of which they accept as meaningless, as their day resets at midnight and all they have achieved is forgotten by everyone except themselves.
The Map of Tiny Perfect Things is a teen love story but to leave it at that would be doing it an injustice. Director Ian Samuel’s makes clear his intentions from the outset for this to be much more than an average teen drama and he succeeds in my opinion. The film proudly wears its influences on its sleeve, constantly referencing films like Groundhog Day and Time Bandits. Even though it is also classed as a comedy, you’re unlikely to find many laugh out loud moments.
The film develops like a philosophy lesson with a cool fun lecturer, asking questions of itself and its audience while knowing it has little intention of answering them. The use of dialogue proves much more effective than special effects at conveying some of these ideas. And while they may be grand in scale, they are delivered at just the right temprament so as not to miss its intended teen audience.
That isn’t to say there is nothing in here for adults. Questions of our existence, losing time and the value of what we do are sure to resonate with a broad age range of audiences. The film moves swiftly along and changes scenery at a brisk pace so as to keep its audience engaged but delivers enough gentle moments to ensure it doesn’t lose its identity trying to look current or trendy.
MORE See the Official Trailer for The Map of Perfect Tiny Things here
It avoids many of the typical scenarios you would expect from a teen drama. There are no cool kids, no high school prom, no love triangles or jealous cheerleaders. In terms of acting and screen time, most of the heavy lifting is done by Kyle Allen and Kathryn Newtons and they successfully bring us characters that avoid being irritating and instead are interestingly layered and likable.
The Map of Tiny Perfect Things is a sweet teen romantic drama that manages to ask some very grown-up questions without feeling preachy or like it’s trying too hard to make a point. The performance by the leads and support are lovely and the whole film has a certain magical quality, making it feel refreshing to watch. A simple idea and story delivered brilliantly